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The Big Green Inhaler Switch event at Adur Health Partnership

Organisation: Adur Health Partnership
Location: Sussex

      Evolving Care

What's the idea?

A type of inhaler used to treat Asthma and COPD called a 'Metered Dose inhaler' accounts for between 15-25% of the carbon pollution of an average GP practice and around 4% of the carbon pollution of the entire NHS. In March, Adur Health Partnership in East Sussex hosted a dedicated event called the ‘Big Green Inhaler Switch’ to give patients an opportunity to switch to a greener alternative. 

Each patient completed a ‘circuit’ as outlined in the boxes below. The circuit was designed to ensure each patient completed a safety check, was reviewed individually by a clinician, and watched a clear demonstration of the new device. Its very important that patients know how to use and feel comfortable with the inhaler (s) they are prescribed.

The event raised awareness amongst patients and staff of the different inhaler options there are available. Patients were followed up after 6 weeks to see how they got on with the new inhaler. Patient feedback from the day was very positive.

"Explanations at each point very informative, it was very efficient as I was one if the first few to go through so it went smoothly. I felt really confident and supported in understanding my new medication. "

Supporting patients to make lower carbon choices about their medicines is one way we will reduce carbon pollution from healthcare and support a healthier environment for healthier people.

 

Doctor at Adur Health Partnership showing a patient an inhaler

Impact of the project

Bringing people together

The event was run by 45 volunteers including clinicians, administration staff and patients.
volunteers at Adur Health Partnership

Positively received

100% of those attending found the event extremely or very useful.
poster for big green inhaler switch

Confidence in change

Patient feedback confirmed people felt more confident using a lower carbon inhaler after the event.
doctor at Adur Health Partnership with a patient

How you could implement a similar idea

If your GP practice, or asthma/COPD team would like to run something similar here are a few tips:

  • Plan ahead and plot out how the day will run, planning for how many people you will need.
  • Put up posters, and promote with your patients well in advance so people can save the date.
  • Consider how people will travel to the event, pick somewhere with good transport links to encourage people out of cars.
  • See if you can partner up with other interested groups to make the most of the opportunity.
people at Adur Health Partnership for Big Green Inhaler Switch Day

Resources to get you started

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP), in collaboration with Greener NHS and other key sustainable healthcare partners, has launched a new RCGP Net Zero hub with eLearning courses and guidance for healthcare professionals which may help with planning. https://elearning.rcgp.org.uk/course/view.php?id=650

Designed for general practice, this toolkit helps practices improve their sustainability, reduce the risks of climate change impacts, and reduce practice expenses. https://toolkit.sos-uk.org/greenimpact/giforhealth/login

The Greener NHS programme has created a selection of videos on patient experience of swapping inhalers: https://www.england.nhs.uk/south-east/2023/09/25/new-videos-launched-to-encourage-patients-with-asthma-to-switch-to-greener-inhaler/]

 

 

 

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