Study: Community-based program in New York City to reduce childhood asthma

Reducing Childhood Asthma Through Community-Based Service Delivery — New York City, 2001–2004 The Harlem Children’s Zone Asthma Initiative was established in 2001 to reduce asthma-related morbidity for children aged 0-12 years living in a 60-block radius of Central Harlem. Families of children with diagnosed asthma or signs or physical findings consistent with asthma were invited to participate. This article in the U.S. CDC publication MMWR summarizes preliminary data from 2001–2004 on the effectiveness of the program in reducing asthma-related morbidity. The data to date suggested the initiative has had a positive effect on community as well as the importance of community-based public health programs, with community health workers making home visits, to reduce asthma morbidity. Participation rates for the various sites ranged from 66% to 100%, with 88% of parents/guardians completing a screening survey also consenting to the physical examination of their children. Participation was prioritized for children with recent symptoms; eligible children may enroll and participate in the program over time. As of September 2004, 3132 children had been screened, over 30% had diagnosed asthma or asthma-like signs, and 1 in 10 of these children has been enrolled in the program. The program includes a pediatric asthma team (including four community health workers (CHWs), a social worker, a nurse, and three physicians) that offers medical, educational, environmental, social, and legal services to families of enrolled children. Monitoring of 13 selected indicators of asthma symptoms and management strategies– like school attendance over previous 14 days (all causes, due to asthma), emergency department and unscheduled provider office visits– was conducted through home visits by CHWs. The CHWs interviewed the parents/guardians of enrolled children at 3-month follow-up intervals over 18 months (up to six visits). For full article, please go to: // Suggested citation: Nicholas SW, Hutchinson VE, Ortiz B, Klihr-Beall S, Jean-Louis B, Shoemaker K, Singleton C, Credell J, Swaner R, Vaughan RD, Northridge ME, Cushman LF, Polley E, Golembeski C. 2005. Reducing Childhood Asthma Through Community-Based Service Delivery — New York City, 2001–2004. MMWR, 54 (01): 11-14.