APF announces landmark partnership with RCGP to empower GP’s spot the signs of PF

RCGP Logo
22
September 2020

We are excited to announce our new partnership with the Royal College of GP’s (RCGP) during IPF Week 2020. This collaboration comes as a result of APF’s first successful campaign for PF Month 2019 “Listen to Our Lungs” where support groups, patients and their families contacted GP surgeries with information and resources to improve awareness and link to local services.

We’re delighted that this campaign resulted in a partnership with the RCGP. Together we have produced a training module that will be marketed to 100,000 GP’s about the signs and symptoms as well as where to refer people suspected of having PF.

Dr Helen Parfrey, APF Trustee and consultant respiratory physician at Royal Papworth Hospital says:

“Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is an uncommon condition and an average GP practice may only look after a few patients with this incurable lung disease. We have worked with the RCGP (UK) to develop a state of the art eLearning course.  It follows through a typical IPF patient journey and highlights the clinical signs and symptoms, how to refer for investigations and anti-fibrotic therapies. This is a fantastic educational resource that we hope will empower GPs to have a better understanding of IPF and its current treatments as well as how they can best support patients living with this lung disease.”

Why is this training needed?

APF’s Patient Survey “Giving Patients a Voice” told us over half (54%) of IPF patients wait more than six months to be diagnosed. One fifth of respondents (20%) took more than two years to be diagnosed correctly.

This is a tragedy given that life expectancy is only 3-4 years.

At the time Professor Gisli Jenkins, NIHR Research Professor at University of Nottingham said:

“We need to raise GPs’ awareness of IPF, and provide them with new diagnostic technologies and invest in research if we are to ever to find a cure. We also need to reduce waiting times for appointments at specialist and general hospitals, so that people can be fast tracked into treatment, given these are more effective at an earlier stage in the condition.”

Link to the training module is here but can only be accessed by members of the RCGP:

https://elearning.rcgp.org.uk/course/view.php?id=409

This module has been kindly funded by Galapagos NV