Asthma Health Outcomes Project
Overviews of Surveyed Asthma ProgramsSeptember 2005
Domestic Programs: Texas (cont’d)
Baylor Martha Foster Lung Care Center
Mary Hart, RRT, RCP
Camp Airways is a free one-day asthma camp offered to children with asthma age 8-12 years old by the Baylor Martha Foster Lung Care Center in Dallas, TX.
The camp is offered on six camp days throughout the year, from 7:30am to 4:00 pm and can serve up to 45 children per day. The camp is staffed mainly by RNs and RTs who are respiratory care specialists at the hospital.
During a typical camp day, children register upon arrival with their parents/caregivers, who receive a brief asthma education session before they leave. Staff measure each child's height and do a PFM assessment, following up as needed if the child needs medication or medical attention. Each child receives a free peak flow meter, symptom diary, aero chamber, camp t-shirt, and colored vision. Children are divided into 4 color-coded "teams" for camp activities and each team is assigned to an RN/RT "captain".
First, children learn how to use the PFM and symptom diary. They use these tools throughout the day to monitor and record symptoms and engage in ongoing discussion of this self-management process. Children participate in 4 rotating asthma education sessions covering triggers and environmental control, the "rule of 2", how to use asthma medication, and signs and symptoms of asthma. They take a field trip to a sports facility and are exposed to various sports and encouraged to be physically active. After lunch, they participate in various games to reinforce and check their asthma knowledge, and have an opportunity for more sports and physical activity. The camp day ends with a graduation ceremony.
Pre-post evaluations show that the program has had a positive impact on self-management skills as well as the medications and/or treatment plans in effect for participating children. The camp has been offered since 1998 and is ongoing through the support of various donors.
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