Barriers to implementing asthma self-management in Malaysian primary care: qualitative study exploring the perspectives of healthcare professionals.

07 Jul 2021
Respiratory conditions
  • Asthma
Respiratory topics
  • Disease management
Lee PY, Cheong AT, Ghazali SS, Salim H, Wong J, Hussein N, Ramli R, Pinnock H, Liew SM, Hanafi NS, Bakar AIA, Ahad AM, Pang YK, Chinna K, Khoo EM


Asthma self-management is a crucial component of asthma management. We sought to explore healthcare professionals' (HCPs') perceptions on barriers to asthma self-management implementation in primary care. We recruited 26 HCPs from six public primary care clinics in a semi-urban district of Malaysia in 2019. The analysis was done inductively. HCPs described barriers that resonated with the "COM-B" behaviour change framework. Capability-related issues stemmed from a need for specific self-management skills training. Opportunity-related barriers included the need to balance competing tasks and limited, poorly tailored resources. Motivation-related barriers included lack of awareness about self-management benefits, which was not prioritised in consultations with perceived lack of receptiveness from patients. These were compounded by contextual barriers of the healthcare organisation and multilingual society. The approach to implementation of asthma self-management needs to be comprehensive, addressing systemic, professional, and patient barriers and tailored to the local language, health literacy, and societal context.