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Understanding the factors affecting self-management of COPD from the perspectives of healthcare practitioners

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Dapo Ogunbayo, Dr Siân Russell, Dr James Newham, Dr Karen Marshall, Professor Barbara Hanratty, Professor Eileen KanerORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Self-management is well-recognised as a quality criteria for the provision of high quality care for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). People with COPD encounter a wide range of healthcare practitioners (HCPs) during their COPD pathway. This study aimed to understand the factors affecting self-management of COPD from the perspectives of the different multidisciplinary healthcare teams involved in COPD care. . Purposive sampling and snowballing were employed in recruitment of participants from primary care teams (PCTs), specialist respiratory teams (SRTs), and pulmonary rehabilitation teams (PRTs) for semi-structured interviews. All interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim and data were analysed thematically. A total of 20 participants – 8 PCTs, 7 SRTs and 5 PRTs were interviewed. Participants identified a range of complex and interrelated factors affecting COPD self-management from three broad themes – patient-, practitioner- and organisational/system-level factors. Patient-level factors were mostly considered as barriers, with COPD knowledge and understanding, and the individual patients’ life context being the most prominent factors. Practitioner-level factors identified HCPs’ speciality, interest and experience in respiratory conditions as the overarching factor that influenced how self-management was conceptually understood and practiced. Organisational/system-level factors varied among the different HCP teams but more general factors identified were the inconsistency of referral pathways and the wide variations of different self-management planning tools. The factors affecting self-management of COPD across these three levels may need to be tackled proportionately in order to ensure the effectiveness of interventions and to enhance the integration of self-management support approaches into routine practice.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ogunbayo OJ, Russell S, Newham JJ, Heslop-Marshall K, Netts P, Hanratty B, Kaner K

Publication type: Working Paper

Publication status: Published

Journal: Primary Care Respiratory Medicine

Year: 2017

Publisher: Nature Partner Journals


DOI: 10.1038/s41533-017-0054-6