Quality prescribing for respiratory illness 2024 to 2027 - draft guidance: consultation

We are consulting on this draft guide which aims to optimise treatment outcomes in the management of respiratory illness. Produced by Scottish Government, NHS Scotland and Experts by Experience, it builds on the 2018 to 2021 strategy. It promotes person-centred care, the 7-Steps process for medicine reviews and shared decision-making.

Clinical Foreword

Promotion of appropriate prescribing of medicines to treat asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), bronchiectasis and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is essential to optimise treatment outcomes and achieve the best care for the individual.

We feel that we will achieve better disease control and patient outcomes by:

  • placing an emphasis on the person-centred review of medicines
  • optimising patient care for respiratory conditions in adults
  • using effective pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical treatment options

This guide promotes a person-centred approach to care and the 7-Steps approach to medicines reviews in the management of respiratory illness, embedding shared decision-making throughout the process.

This document also takes into account environmental considerations. We feel that better control of respiratory conditions can be achieved through:

  • promotion of good person-centred care
  • improved preventative treatment plans
  • promotion of correct use of Metered Dose Inhalers where necessary
  • use of environmentally sustainable inhalers where appropriate - including considering a switch from Metered Dose Inhalers to Dry Powder Inhalers where clinically appropriate

Improved disease control will lessen environmental impacts and this will ultimately aid NHS Scotland in achieving net-zero carbon emissions.

This guide highlights clinical recommendations for respiratory prescribing practices and utilising data for improvement and benchmarking across NHS boards in Scotland. This will help optimise therapy and drive improvement according to current national guidance.

This guide builds upon the previous 2018-21 strategy and has been written by Scottish Government and NHS Scotland, supported by patients with lived experience, patient organisations and the multidisciplinary team across primary and secondary care. It is aimed at Primary and Secondary Care clinicians, Managed Clinical Networks and Board Medicines Management Teams.


Dave Anderson and Tom Fardon, Chairpersons

Alpana Mair, Co-Chair and Head of Effective Prescribing and Therapeutics Division

Gregor Smith , Chief Medical Officer

Alex McMahon, Chief Nursing Officer

Jason Leitch, National Clinical Director

Alison Strath, Chief Pharmaceutical Officer


Email: EPandT@gov.scot

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