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COPD in primary care

Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) present first to primary care. It is diagnosed using spirometry and management is initiated in primary care following a comprehensive disease assessment. However, there is clear evidence of a lack of quality in performing spirometry, a poor understanding of the appropriate use of treatments and variable access to interventions, such as pulmonary rehabilitation, which are critical to effective disease control.

The primary care management of COPD is haphazard and requires urgent investigation and remedy to impact this debilitating and expensive disease. This project will review the provision of care and develop plans for local implementation to improve COPD-related outcomes.


The project is aimed at assessing the quality of primary care diagnosis, assessment and management of COPD with the goal of developing an intervention plan to improve patient outcomes in a cost-effective way. This is applicable to all of the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCGs) within the Oxford AHSN region.

It will involve changes to the clinical processes for the care of COPD if they do not reach current care standards.


  • Assess the quality of spirometry performed within primary care and plan an improvement programme – this will lead to a faster and more accurate diagnosis improving care for these patients
  • Assess the quality of the clinical and impacts assessment of COPD and implement the use of the British Lung Foundation patient passport as a mechanism for driving quality improvement
  • Develop and implement plans with CCGs, based on local need, to improve COPD care – this will reduce morbidity and improve quality of life for COPD patients.