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Pediatric Lung Association – (PLA)

Striving for healthy lungs of Children

The Pediatric Lung Association is erected to have a wider and specific focus on the pediatric lung diseases. This plans to foster links between professionals, patients and communities to have a broad base appeal and effectiveness. This forum is open for all walks of society agree with our objectives of lung health.

The donations may be made in name of “Helping Hands Foundation (Pediatric Lung Association), Account # 01001505, UBL, Nishtar Chowk Branch (0921), Multan”.

OBJECTIVES

Our objectives are

  1. To prevent lung diseases of children
  2. To promote lung health of children
  3. To treat various lung ailments of the children

We plan to achieve our objectives through various initiatives, program and strategies.
Among these are

  • Pediatric Asthma: This is most common chronic disease of children. We will work:

    1. To teach children to understand asthma and manage it.
    2. To screen the children with Lung Function Tests in schools and outsides.
    3. To provide diagnostics and therapeutic facilities.
  • Pediatric Tuberculosis: This is most common chronic illness of children.
    The diagnosis of TB is difficult in children. The tests usually are not available, and the patients are extremely poor to manage the tests or the drugs. We will

    1. Provide awareness about the disease, mode of spread and need to get treated for Latent TB and TB.
    2. Provide diagnostic tools at various levels.
    3. Provide medicines whenever and wherever is required.
  • Pediatric Pneumonia: This is most common acute infection of the children. This is the biggest killer of children in Pakistan and worldwide. We plan

    1. To provide guidelines for its management.
    2. To suggest steps for its prevention and control
  • Tobacco Control: We plan to offer a variety of smoking control and prevention programs targeted to specific groups and schools.

    1. Freedom from Smoking: For people who already smoke.
    2. Teens Against Tobacco: A peer-teaching tobacco control program to deter youngsters from taking up smoking.
  • Environmental Health: Lung disease can be caused or aggravated by air pollution. So, we plan

    1. Advocate for clean air & educate public on health hazard of air pollution.
    2. Publish reports on air pollution & quality of air.
  • Advocacy Programs:
    We plan to persuade the District Government & Policymakers to fund for lung-related research, develop & enforce laws/regulations for lung health & patronize domestic health programs e.g. asthma & TB control activities & their registry.Advocacy Programs

  • Research:

    1. To know disease burden in the community & schools, rate of increase of diseases and factor causing the diseases.
  • Public Awareness:

    To educate the public about the impact and prevention of lung disease we will use web site, news releases, print, broadcast, electronic media and conferences.

SERVICES

We have accomplished a number of plans and strategies under the PLA banner.

  • Research:
    We have biggest program and data for lung function test, technically called Spirometry.
    This project is named as PASS (Program for Asthma Screening in Schools). Under this program, PLA team goes to the schools and performs the spirometry. All the children who do not have normal lung function are referred for the consultant advice at the Institute of Mother And Child Care (I-MACCA).

    We are the only center in Pakistan whose data has been selected for defining the Global Lung equation by the Global Lung Initiative (GLI) of the European Respiratory Society (ERS).

  • Providing drugs to the poor:
    The poor populations suffer disproportionately from lung diseases and have minimum/no resources to get diagnosed or treated. For this we are providing:

    1. Free/subsidized diagnostics.
    2. Free/subsidized medicines.
    3. Round the clock consultation.
  • Follow up Clinics for lung diseases:
    PLA is running Follow Up Clinics at the Institute of Mother And Child Care (I-MACCA) to cater the children with Lung diseases. Twice weekly, a team of trained workers, doctors and respiratory consultant takes care of such patients and advise them as is pertinent. Following services are provided:

    1. A consultant with his team of doctors and respiratory therapists advises children for their lung problems.
    2. There is always a need to educate the parents about the disease, answer their queries, teach them the right way of using the drugs and assessing their asthma control. The PLA has employed the 2 respiratory therapists that provide this service at the Follow up clinic regularly.
    3. The respiratory therapists examine each child and record its general parameters, records the vitals and fills up the data needed to assess the control of the child asthma.
    4. The respiratory therapists and doctor educate the parents on various issues of lung health such as:
    1. Nature of the disease like asthma, TB and Cystic fibrosis
    2. Course of the above diseases.
    3. Helping to identify the allergens.
    4. Helping to devise strategies for avoiding from allergens or decreasing exposure to allergens.
    5. Appropriate management plans.
    6. Customized treatments for children of variable background and disease severity.
    7. Techniques of performing Peak Flow Rates (PFR) measurements.
    8. Techniques of proper recording of PFR.
    9. Techniques of proper spacer use & care.

    Asthma Action Plan education.

  • Diagnostic Equipment for pediatric asthma:
    The asthma is the most common chronic illness of children. It is usually treated without making a proper diagnosis in terms of its staging and severity. The diagnostic tests are quite expensive. The parents do not have resources to have this disorder diagnosed properly. The basic test like Lung Function Test is not available in government sector.
    PLA has managed to arrange a Spirometer machine with a respiratory therapist. They are available on the Follow up days.

    1. We provide the Lung Function Tests for free to the children coming to our Asthma Follow up clinic.
    2. Spirometer is most modern in its series and can measure more than 45 parameters of lung functions.
    3. It can also keep record of the tests and is very helpful in looking at the trends of lung functions over period of months or years.
    4. The records of the tests are maintained and are used for the subsequent visits.

    PLA is also providing Oscillation Spirometry working with Impedance resistance assessment. This equipment is first of its kind in the country and can be used to assess the lung function tests in children who can’t make a forced expiratory effort like:

    1. Very young children less than 5 years.
    2. Children with mental handicap or cerebral palsy.
    3. Children with motor delay or who can’t understand the commands.

    Children with neurological deficits.

  • Donation of equipment:
    The PLA has donated all the related equipment that was required for the examination of the children for respiratory disease to the Nishtar Medical university, Multan. It included:

    1. Pediatric stethoscope
    2. Pediatric weight & Height measurement machines.
    3. Blood pressure equipment
    4. Torch etc.
    5. Provision of Asthma Follow up Cards.

    The asthma is a chronic disease. It needs a long term follow up. The patients usually lose their treatment slips. To ensure proper record of treatment and a better follow up there was a need of follow up cards.

    The PLA has donated 1000 Follow up cards, worth Rs: 10,000/= to the Asthma Follow up Clinic. These cards are given to the patients and the record of medicines and illness is kept on them.

  • Pediatric TB: PLA has managed to provide few tests that are not available in the government facility to help in the diagnosis of tuberculosis. It includes the provision of:

    1. Tuberculin test vials with disposable syringes.
    2. Culture for various specimens for the TB.