Breathe Easy: Asthma and Lung Health Community Seminar

Asthma is a long-term lung condition that affects one in nine Australians, one of the highest rates in the world. It has a significant impact on people's health, quality of life and the health care system.

Breath Easy: Asthma and Lung health community seminar


Prof. Vanessa McDonald– Professor of Chronic Disease Nursing at the University of Newcastle School of Nursing and Midwifery, Co-Director of NHMRC Centre of Excellence Asthma Treatable Traits. Honorary Clinical Nurse Consultant at the John Hunter Hospital

Conjoint Prof. Peter Wark– Senior staff specialist at John Hunter Hospital department of respiratory and sleep medicine.  School of Medicine and Public Health University of Newcastle.

Dr. Vanessa Clark– Post Doctoral Researcher at HMRI. Research Manager for the Centre of Excellence in Treatable Traits.

Presentation Summary

  • Lung health and asthma research
  • What asthma management is and how to optimise it
  • Pinnacle events for people with asthma (including several disaster events)
  • Resources available and suggested management strategies for asthma in bushfires
  • Where we are, and where we are planning on going for the future in asthma management and research

They discuss

Conjoint Prof. Peter Wark discusses some of the misconceptions about asthma symptoms, the importance of effective treatment and inhaler technique, along with the need for an individualised asthma action plan.

Conjoint Prof. Wark’s second presentation discusses air pollution and disaster events such as bushfires and thunderstorm events that have had significant impacts on people living with airways diseases. He goes on to discuss some demographic characterisations of COVID19 and people with airways diseases like asthma and COPD.

Dr. Vanessa Clark discusses COVID-19, thunderstorm asthma and bushfires, focusing on identifying who is at risk and offers potential management strategies and suggestions on what you can do in these events.

Prof. Vanessa McDonald discusses the future direction of research at the Centre of Excellence in Treatable Traits. Prof McDonald suggests a new model of care, tailored personalised treatment for patients based on their identified traits. She goes on to show the benefits of this approach and the improvements a treatable traits approach has on quality of life for patients.   


The panel offer excellence discussion around contemporary issues regarding asthma, phenotypes and treatment and COVID19