The Asthma Control Test, or ACT, is a questionnaire designed to help a patient and their healthcare provider determine if his/her asthma symptoms are well controlled.
For patients aged 12 and older, it is a quick and simple survey asking the patient five specific questions about their asthma during the past 4 weeks. Each question has five potential answers to choose from, so making sure all answers are read before selecting one is essential for an accurate assessment.
For patients between the ages of 4 and 11, the ACT has four questions for the child (with 4 potential answers), followed by three questions for the parent (with 6 different responses). Smaller children may need some assistance with reading or understanding the question, but they should be allowed to select the response. The Childhood ACT has illustrations to aid a child’s comprehension. When the parent answers their questions, they should not let the child’s answers influence their own response.
At Allergy & Clinical Immunology, we have recently incorporated the Asthma Control Test into our routine assessment of patients with asthma. Our patients are asked to fill out this survey upon arriving for their follow-up appointments. It does not take the place of our traditional asthma assessment questions, or other tools that we employ to assess a patient’s asthma control, but it can help provide a more complete picture. This enables our physicians to design a treatment plan specific to each patient with the goal of well controlled asthma.