Professors from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio recently launched two websites dedicated to improving treatment outcomes of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Both the Animated COPD Patient and WipeCOPD websites are not only for patients but also for caregivers, and seek to help in the management of the disease, as well as in choosing the best possible course of treatment.
Animated COPD Patient: An Animated Patient’s Guide to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is a free website designed by two professors of medicine in the Division of Pulmonary Diseases and Critical Care Medicine at the Health Science Center, Sandra G. Adams, M.D., and Antonio R. Anzueto, M.D. The website includes educational videos on topics like COPD symptoms, risk factors, complications, diagnosis, treatment and resources.
“The Animated COPD Patient website was designed to meet the educational needs of patients and caregivers affected by COPD,” explained Adams. “One of our goals is to empower patients through effective education on COPD. This allows patients to be better partners with their health care providers. Better dialogue between patients and physicians leads to improved health outcomes.”
The creation of the site was made possible by a collaboration between the university and the Annenberg Center for Health Sciences at Eisenhower and Prime Medic, Inc., as well as the Postgraduate Institute for Medicine. In addition, Animated COPD Patients was supported by an unrestricted grant from Boehringer Ingelheim.
WipeCOPD, which stands for Web-based Interactive Professional Education, is an interactive professional and educational program focused on COPD for healthcare professionals. Also designed by Adams, the site was made possible through a partnership between the Wipe Diseases Foundation and UTHSCSA. It was also supported by a “GlaxoSmithKline Distinguished Scholar Award in Respiratory Care” grant from the Chest Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the American College of Chest Physicians.
“With proceeds from WipeCOPD, we will be able to create additional websites on other lung diseases. All funds generated from the site will enable us to continue to create web-based educational programs,” said Adams, who is also the president of the non-profit Wipe Diseases Foundation. “Our overarching goal is to provide health care professionals with the tools needed to change their clinical practice and to improve outcomes of patients with COPD, asthma and other diseases.”
WipeCOPD offers professionals a year of unlimited use at a cost of $100 for nurses, respiratory therapists, physician assistants, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, or at a cost of $150 for physicians. There is also the possibility of receiving continuing education credit, as well as special prices for groups or students.