Project BREATHE: Baltimore Realizing Equity in Asthma Treatment in Healthcare and Education

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , /

(light music)>>So, we know that you know,
25% of kids in Baltimore City are chronically absent
and the number one reason for that absenteeism medically is asthma. Poorly controlled asthma. But, we also know as healthcare providers that asthma isn’t a
reason to miss anything. With the proper management
and the proper adherence to your medication, there’s no reason for you to miss a day of school.>>Pediatric asthma
really is an equity issue because it drives a lot
of health disparities. Particularly for children of color and particularly for poor children. It also drives a lot of
educational disparity. So, kids who have uncontrolled
asthma are much more likely to be absent from school
and then they not only have to deal with adverse health outcomes, but potentially adverse
educational outcomes.>>Our program BREATHE,
Baltimore Realizing Equity in Asthma Treatment in Health & Education takes a really simple
model that was developed at the University of Rochester and applies it right
here in Baltimore City.>>At the Rales Health Center the fact that they can give asthma
controller medicine. So, the medicine that a kid needs everyday to help them control
their asthma in school. That means I know that kid is getting that medicine I prescribed
on a daily basis. They’re not only getting
it, but they’re learning how to take it, the importance
of taking it everyday and getting all the
education along with that. That’s one less kid that I worry about having their asthma under control.>>Voice Over: A pediatrician
works with the family to determine if school administration is the best way for their child to get their controller inhaler everyday. The doctor prescribes the inhaler and fills out a form for
the school health staff. The inhaler gets delivered to the school or their family picks up the
medicine and drops it off. Each day, the student comes to the nurse who administers the inhaler, along with some personalized education. Once a month, the nurse
uses the Asthma Control Test and communicates back to the doctor and family with any concerns.>>Before I started taking
medicine at the Rales Centre, I was wheezing a lot and
I had a lot of chest pain and I had to leave outta class. But now, they make sure I
take my medicine every day and it helped me a lot. So, now I can play
lacrosse and I can dance.>>We were always in the ER
or the urgent care center because he wasn’t on a regular regiment. But, since he’s been here about a year, we no longer have been in the ER. His medicine is regulated. He’s doing great, he’s able to go outside, run and play, all those type of things that the neighborhood kids are able to do, he can do as well.>>There was one year I rode
30 times to the hospital with children that had asthma attacks. The last few years of the asthma project I have done that zero times. So, I definitely think
we’re seeing that one, our kids are having
healthier school experiences because their asthma is better managed. And their parents have the
support to manage it better. And then, we’re also
seeing that it’s positively impacting kids being in
school and at school on time because they’re, they can
get the support they need for their asthma treatment
here without their parents having to pick them up,
take them somewhere else and aren’t able to get ’em back to school.>>This model really capitalizes on the power of school nursing. And helps nurses move
their time from reactive, treating children in asthma
exacerbation to proactive, preventing those exacerbations.>>I play lacrosse, basketball, I did track, I play street hockey, I’m captain of the dance
team, I just did everything. Asthma is not going to
stop me from anything. (light music)

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