Can eliciting and addressing health-related goals improve asthma control and asthma related quality of life? Feasibility phase II randomised controlled trial of a brief intervention

An integral step in developing and agreeing a tailored self-management plan depends on individuals being able to identify and prioritise their own goals. Assisting patients to elicit their asthma goals acknowledges their expertise on the ways in which asthma impacts on their life and their preferences for managing their disease. A feasibility pilot clustered randomised controlled trial (RCT) of an asthma goal-eliciting tool on patients managed within primary care was conducted. The intervention aimed to encourage health professionals to initiate conversation that will facilitate change in patient attitude and management strategy and through so doing help patients identify/set their asthma goals. The results showed that the goal-eliciting tool gave people with asthma an opportunity to raise issues that might not otherwise have been addressed. However, despite perceived value there are practical issues which need to be addressed before progressing to a full trial.

Outcome and Translation

The study provided health professionals within primary care with information on how patient goals for asthma can be elicited, providing the base for an individual self-management plan. Improvements in clinical outcome, quality of life and reduction in cost to the NHS through reduced use of primary and secondary services, are dependent on this process. The study provided information for the design of a RCT to evaluate the use of the intervention within routine clinical practice.

HERU researchers involved in this research project: Marjon van der Pol

External Collaborators: G Hoskins, B Williams, E Duncan (University of Stirling); P.T Donnan (University of Dundee) and A Sheik, H Pinnock (University of Edinburgh)


Hoskins, G., Abhyankar, P., Taylor, A.D., Duncan, E., Sheikh, A., Pinnock, H., Pol, M. van der., Donnan, P.T. and Williams, B. (2013) 'Goal-setting intervention in patients with active asthma: protocol for a pilot cluster-randomised controlled trial [protocol]', Trials, 14(1), 289.

Hoskins, G., Williams, B., Duncan, E., Sheikh, A., Pinnock, H., Donnan, P. T. and Pol, M. van der (2014) Can eliciting and addressing health-related goals improve asthma control and asthma-related quality of life? Feasibility Phase II pilot randomised controlled trial. Final report submitted to Chief Scientist Office.

Hoskins, G., Williams, B., Abhyankar, P., Donnan, P., Duncan, E., Pinnock, H., Pol, M. van der, Rauchhaus, P., Taylor, A. and Sheikh, A. (2016) 'Achieving Good Outcomes for Asthma Living (GOAL): mixed methods feasibility and pilot cluster randomised controlled trial of a practical intervention for eliciting, setting and achieving goals for adults with asthma', Trials, 17(1), 584.