Degree Name

Masters of Science - Research


School of Nursing, Midwifery and Indigenous Health


The level of adherence to self management recommendations among Australian adults with asthma is inadequate despite decades of investment in asthma education, clinical guidelines for patient care and advances in pharmacotherapy. Self management strategies are well accepted as necessary for patients to control their symptoms and maintain a healthy quality of life. This research therefore aimed to examine the barriers and facilitators of effective asthma self management strategies from the patient perspective.

This research was implemented in three phases, each informing the next. A review of the literature was undertaken to understand the current recommended components of asthma self management and to identify any reported attributes which may negatively influence patient behaviour.

Focus group research was then carried out which revealed numerous complex and interesting themes. Adults with asthma had difficulty in accepting generic self management recommendations as being personally relevant to them, and further, voiced a need for social support and a concern regarding stigma.

The theme of stigmatisation was explored in the final stage of this research. Results of a web based survey demonstrated that stigma is indeed an area which may negatively impact on asthma self management, and is a worthy topic for future investigation.