Implementation and evaluation of a lung health awareness programme in primary care in Crete, Greece: a FRESH AIR study.

05 Aug 2021
Type of resource
Dublin 2021
Ioanna Tsiligianni, Clinic of Social and Family Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Crete, Heraklion, Crete, Greece,
Clinical Research Results Implementation and evaluation of a lung health awareness programme in primary care in Crete, Greece: a FRESH AIR study.Aim: Public awareness is key to preventing respiratory diseases. Greece has one of the highest smoking rates in Europe, while biomass burning for household heating has increased lately due to the financial crisis. This study aimed to adapt and assess an awareness raising module on the effects of tobacco and biomass smoke exposure in primary care (PC) in Crete, Greece. Methods: A cascading ‘train-the-trainer’ awareness-raising module was implemented in six rural settings of Crete. Firstly, the module trained GPs serving the identified settings and included them in the adaptation of educational materials (posters, leaflets, presentations) that they would use to train other PC professionals (nurses, community workers) and community members (CMs). Trained GPs and PC professionals finally trained CMs during individual or group-based sessions. Obtained knowledge of GPs, PC professionals and CMs was assessed through questionnaires before and after each training. Results: Overall, 17 GPs were trained. Rates of correct answers to knowledge questions ranged from 35.5% to 100% pre-training and from 58.8% to 100% post-training. A total of 27 PC professionals were trained by GPs. Rates of correct answers before and after training were 37.0% to 100% and 48.1% to 100% respectively. GPs and other PC professionals trained 106 CMs. Improvements in knowledge were more pronounced and concerned increased life expectancy upon smoking cessation (29.2 vs 85.8%), smoking in pregnancy and low birth weight (38.7% vs 90.6%), pneumonia in children caused by biomass burning (30.2% vs 90.6%), cancer caused by tobacco smoking (44.3% vs 84.95) and reducing household air pollution by using dry fuel wood (39.6% vs 67.9%). Conclusion: Our findings indicate that a train-the-trainer approach accompanied by educational material can increase knowledge of GPs, PC professionals and CMs. In settings with limited resources, such approaches can be used to strengthen PC, engage communities and improve respiratory health outcomes. Implementation Science/Service Development Research Ideas on Respiratory Conditions and Tobacco Dependency Abstract Declaration of Interest As part of FRESH AIR, the study was funded by European Union’s Research and Innovation program Horizon 2020 (Health, Medical research and the challenge of ageing) under grant agreement no. 680997 TRIAL ID NTR5759. Authors report no conflicts of interest. References and Clinical Trial Registry Information