No child should have to struggle for air. But that's the reality for more than 325,000 children across Ohio. Kids with asthma face countless challenges throughout their childhood, some leading to hospitalization and even death. That's why the American Lung Association in Ohio partnered with Dayton Children's Hospital and the Dayton Asthma Alliance to help Ohio's children and parents get asthma under control.
Dayton Public School nurses were trained in the American Lung Association's Open Airways Program curriculum, which is an evidenced-based asthma-management program to help children manage their asthma. The school nurses then trained over 1,200 Dayton Public School employees on the basics of asthma management.
"The impact could be significant. Asthma is the #1 chronic illness among children, and definitely the #1 reason we admit children here," says Belinda Huffman BS, RRT-CPFT, RCP, Manager of Pulmonary Health/Diagnostic Lab at Dayton Children's Hospital.
Dayton Children's Hospital also trained student nurses from Wright State University and Cedarville University in the Open Airways Program. In turn, the student nurses were placed in all 17 Dayton Public elementary schools and trained 297 children with asthma through a series of five sessions.
Eleven parent sessions were also held with 72 parents in attendance. Parents learned about asthma management and asthma triggers. Then parents were invited to receive a home visit by a community health worker from the Wright State University Center for Healthy Communities to identify asthma triggers in the home.
"We're already seeing improvements that would indicate better controlled asthma in our community," said Huffman.