Table 1

Severe Asthma Toolkit content layout and description

ModuleDescription
About the Severe Asthma ToolkitAn introduction to the resource outlining the identified need and included content areas.
What is severe asthma?Information on disease definitions, prevalence, disease burden, pathophysiology, symptoms, asthma attacks and phenotypes.
Diagnosis and assessmentOutlines the importance of confirming an asthma diagnosis and a practical stepwise approach for diagnosis and assessment, including considerations for the use of lung function assessments, questionnaires, allergy assessment, phenotyping, bronchoscopy, imaging and assessment of occupational asthma.
ManagementProvides recommendations for an integrated, multidisciplinary approach, including content to support asthma education, development of written action plans, reviewing and reinforcing self-management skills, multidisciplinary approaches and referral.
MedicationsOutlines the benefit from a targeted treatment approach, rather than the stepwise approach used for mild-to-moderate disease. An overview of reliever, controller and add-on therapies, including recommendations for the use of monoclonal antibodies and bronchial thermoplasty.
ComorbiditiesHighlights the importance of considering and systematically assessing comorbidities, which contribute to worsened severe asthma outcomes. Content covers pulmonary and extrapulmonary comorbidities, including allergic and non-allergic rhinitis, chronic rhinosinusitis, dysfunctional breathing, vocal cord dysfunction, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, bronchiectasis, obstructive sleep apnoea, obesity, anxiety and depression, gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, osteoporosis and cardiovascular and metabolic disease.
Living with severe asthmaA patient-centred view of the patient experience including recorded interviews, describing daily symptom burden, mental and emotional health, intimacy and relationships, self-management support, medication costs, experience of care and attacks and prognosis.
Establishing a clinicRecognising the complexity of organising and delivering care from a dedicated severe asthma clinic, content focusses on set-up, staffing and multidisciplinary team approach, facilities, delivery approach, tailored referrals, evaluation, opportunities for training and research, and barriers and hurdles.
Paediatrics and adolescentsRecognising additional considerations for different patient populations, specific content is included for paediatrics and adolescents focused on management, assessment, alternative diagnosis and comorbidities, psychosocial issues and medications.
Specific populationsMaterial specific for Indigenous Australians and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Backgrounds.
RegistriesAn overview of disease registries and specific details on enrolling patients in current Australia severe asthma registries, including the Severe Asthma Web-based Database, Australian Mepolizumab Registry and the Australian Xolair Registry.
ResourcesA range of practical tools for use in clinical practice, including clinic recommendations, resources for assessment and systematic and multidimensional assessment, guidance for translation and implementation activities, seminar presentations, videos, links and key references.
  • Module subheadings are indicated in italics.