• University of Edinburgh
  • RESPIRE logo

Chronic Respiratory Diseases (CRD) in Primary Care Settings

Explore diagnosis and management of respiratory disease using case studies from low resource settings.

4,074 enrolled on this course

A female doctor with the International Medical Corps checking the heartbeat of a young boy with a stethoscope

Chronic Respiratory Diseases (CRD) in Primary Care Settings

4,074 enrolled on this course

  • 5 weeks

  • 3 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

Get practical guidance on primary care management of CRD

On this course, you’ll get a world-class introduction in how to diagnose and manage respiratory disease in low- and middle-income primary care settings.

Explore how to treat chronic respiratory disease

Chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) place a huge burden on healthcare services worldwide, as recognised by the World Health Organization (WHO).

On the course, you’ll explore the physical, psychological, and social impact of chronic respiratory diseases on the individual, their family, and the wider community.

Improve your diagnostic skills

You’ll demonstrate an improved ability as a healthcare professional to diagnose and manage asthma, COPD, and other chronic respiratory diseases in children and adults.

By the end of the course, you’ll be able to assess how to adapt your advice to the local context – taking into account your access to staff, care, and treatment in terms of the availability of local resources.

Learn to treat asthma and COPD alongside experts

The course is led by RESPIRE at the University of Edinburgh, and the International Primary Care Respiratory Group (IPCRG). RESPIRE is led by global experts in respiratory disease, while IPCRG is a world network of primary care respiratory clinicians that works to improve respiratory health and CRD best practice.

Under their guidance, you’ll come away with increased confidence in your diagnostic skills and your ability to manage the healthcare resources available to you.

Download video: standard or HD

Skip to 0 minutes and 18 seconds Chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma and COPD, are some of the most common causes of ill health in our communities. These non-communicable diseases affecting the lungs and respiratory system are very common in low resource settings. People with long-term respiratory diseases are often treated in primary care settings or in the community. Primary healthcare workers need to recognise common symptoms and know how to diagnose and treat respiratory disease.

Skip to 1 minute and 1 second A good way to learn about the diagnosis, treatment, and management of chronic respiratory diseases is from real case studies, based on the experience of primary healthcare workers in low resource settings and the best available evidence. Primary healthcare workers play an essential role in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of respiratory disease. The University of Edinburgh’s short online course will give you an understanding of how you can adapt advice to your local context, taking account of the global variation and access to care and treatment and the workforce. Sign up today.

What topics will you cover?

  • Module 1: The global burden of chronic respiratory disease
  • Module 2: Diagnosis and management of asthma in resource-poor settings
  • Module 3: Diagnosis and management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in resource-poor settings
  • Module 4: Diagnosis and management of other chronic respiratory disease common in resource-poor settings
  • Module 5: Top tips for implementing care for people with chronic respiratory disease in resource-poor settings

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Understand the physical, psychological and social impact of chronic respiratory diseases on the individual, their family and community
  • Demonstrate improved skills in the diagnosis and management of asthma, COPD and other chronic respiratory disease in children and adults
  • Demonstrate improved skills in communicating and supporting patients with asthma, COPD and other CRDs to live with their condition (often in the context of multi-morbidity)
  • Assess how to adapt advice to the local context, taking account of the global variation in access to care and treatment, and workforce
  • Assess how to individualise the management of care in terms of affordability and availability of resources

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for those working within or those with an interest in diagnosis and management of respiratory care/primary care in resource-constrained countries.

The course is aimed at all interested primary healthcare professionals in low- and middle-income countries. In particular, frontline healthcare workers in primary care and (where there may not be a primary care infrastructure) community healthcare workers (CHW).

It is applicable to staff (including doctors, nurses, and community healthcare workers) delivering primary healthcare in these countries, plus policy-makers, managers, community leaders, and individuals concerned about chronic respiratory disease.

Who will you learn with?

Siân is Chief Executive Officer at the International Primary Care Respiratory Group, a clinically-led charity working locally and collaborating globally to improve respiratory health in primary care.

Hilary is Professor of Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, NIHR Global Health Research Unit (RESPIRE), University of Edinburgh and a family doctor in Whitstable, Kent

Kamilla is a senior lecturer and a family medicine specialist at the Department of Primary Care Medicine, University of Malaya, Malaysia.

Nazim has been involved in developing and conducting training for primary care physicians on asthma and COPD in Bangladesh and providing primary care to people with chronic respiratory diseases.

Monsur is a primary care respiratory physician with over 35 years experience in clinical practice. Monsur is also founding & senate member of the International Primary Care Respiratory Group (IPCRG).

Aziz is Professor of Primary Care Research & Development, Director of the Usher Institute and Dean of Data at The University of Edinburgh.

PhD, Researcher, and Respiratory physician at Pulmonology Department with ICU of the National Center for Cardiology and Internal Medicine named after M.M. Mirrakhimov (Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan).

Who developed the course?

The University of Edinburgh

Founded in 1583, the University of Edinburgh is one of the world’s top universities and is globally recognised for research, innovation and high-quality teaching.

International Primary Care Respiratory Group (IPCRG)

The International Primary Care Respiratory Group (IPCRG) is a clinically-led charitable company that works locally in primary care and collaborates globally to improve respiratory health.


The RESPIRE collaboration spans across Asia with organisations in Bangladesh, India, Malaysia and Pakistan working in partnership with the University of Edinburgh.

Endorsers and supporters

funded by

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) & UK Aid logo

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Subscribe & save


For the first two months. Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$129/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Tests to boost your learning
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 5 Jan 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

T&Cs apply.

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  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
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  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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