Howard County CARES

COPD & Asthma Resources with Educational Support

The Howard County CARES program is designed to address the increase in prevalence and disparities associated with asthma and COPD rates in Howard County, Maryland. The American Lung Association, with the assistance of a local endowment, will be implementing interventions in Howard County, Maryland to address the increase in asthma prevalence and assist with the current rate of COPD.

Over 5,000 cases of pediatric asthma in Howard County, Maryland
15% of Howard County's 330,000 residents have been diagnosed with asthma
4% of Howard County residents have COPD, emphysema or chronic bronchitis


Howard County, Maryland is home to just over 330,000 residents and prides itself on being ranked the healthiest county in the state by the U.S. News and World Report in 2021. Although the county’s overall health is ranked high, lung health is an area that still needs improvement. The Research and Evaluation Group at the Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC) completed a needs assessment in Howard County, Maryland to determine the prevalence of asthma and COPD in the area and identify where the gaps in care remain. The assessment reported 15% of residents are currently living with asthma and 22% of residents are currently living with a child with asthma, which is an increase in recent years. The number of residents with COPD, emphysema or chronic bronchitis has remined constant over the years, with 4% of residents reporting a diagnosis. 

The CARES project will allocate the American Lung Association’s signature asthma and COPD programs where resources are limited and will take place in individual’s homes, the community and healthcare setting. These programs will equip individuals with the necessary skills to manage their lung health independently, without overutilizing acute care resources such as the emergency department. 


Patients & Caregivers
  • Asthma Basics
    Program designed to help participants learn more about asthma and is offered as an online module, in person workshop and live webinar. 
  • Tobacco Basics
    Self-paced online module designed to help participants understand the toll of tobacco use in the U.S. 
  • Better Breathers Club 
    Group for individuals with lung disease to learn better ways to cope with their disease while receiving support from other’s living through a similar experience. 
  • Breathe Well Live Well 
    Educational program for adults with asthma that teaches them ways to better manage their disease in order to live active and healthy lives. 
  • Asthma and COPD Home Assessments
    A virtual home assessment program for individuals with asthma and COPD to learn more about their disease, ways to reduce triggers and receive remediation supplies. 
  • Open Airways for Schools 
    Proven and effective evidence-based asthma self-management program for children ages 8 – 11. 
  • Kick’n Asthma 
    Fun and interactive program teaching asthma self-management skills to children ages 11 -16. 
Healthcare Providers
  • COPD Educator Course 
    Course that provides healthcare professionals with a thorough overview of COPD information to better support their patients.
  • Asthma Educator Institute
    Professional education course for frontline healthcare professionals who want to implement asthma guidelines-based care and are eligible to sit for the national asthma certification exam. 
  • Enhancing Care for Children with Asthma 
    Quality improvement program designed to ensure high quality asthma care in clinics. 

Scholarships Available!

The CARES project is offering scholarships to healthcare professionals in Howard County, Maryland to become trained facilitators and participate in educational courses for free ($300-$400 value)! See a list of courses and trainings eligible for scholarships below: 

  • Open Airways for Schools 
  • Kick’n Asthma 
  • COPD Educator Course 
  • Asthma Educator Institute 
  • Breathe Well Live Well

For more information about the Howard County Cares Program, please contact JaKaiya Frisby by email at [email protected]

Asthma Educator Institute
, | Jul 11, 2022
Community Connections - RSV: The Illness on Every Parent's Radar This Season
, | Feb 08, 2023