Combining physical home improvements with in-home support to families can, a leading contributor to absenteeism among children, a study in the American Journal of Public Health has found.
Completed in cooperation with the National Center for Healthy Housing, the study documented the results of a pilot program called Highline Communities Healthy Homes. The program worked with 40 families in King County, Wash., that each have at least one asthmatic child.
County health-agency workers helped identify asthma triggers and counseled families about how to control asthma with medication and medical care. And the county housing authority made weatherization improvements to their homes, including the installation of ventilation fans, removal of carpeting, and replacement of leaking faucets.
Over the one-year study, the percentage of children with asthma that was deemed not well controlled or very poorly controlled fell from 100 percent to 28.8 percent, compared with a decrease to 51.6 percent for children in a comparison group, which received only asthma counseling.
A version of this article appeared in the February 19, 2014 edition of Education Week as Children With Asthma