Asthma Health Outcomes Project
Overviews of Surveyed Asthma ProgramsSeptember 2005
Domestic Programs: Idaho
Healthy Homes, Head Start
Idaho Asthma Prevention and Control Program
Jean Woodward, BS, CHES
The Healthy Homes, Head Start Project is a product of a collaborative effort between the Idaho Asthma Prevention and Control Program (IAPCP) and the Western Idaho Community Action Partnership Head Start (WICAP). The project started in 2003 and serves low-income children ages 3-5 years and their families.
The goal of the Healthy Homes, Head Start intervention, an in-home environmental assessment, is to reduce environmental exposures to triggers of asthma and allergies in the homes of WICAP Head Start families. The intervention is based on the American Lung Association of Washington's Master Home Environmentalist program. The intervention and materials were tailored to meet the needs of the WICAP Head Start families.
The in-home environmental assessment was incorporated in home visits already conducted by the WICAP family service worker. The family service worker does a visual assessment of the home's condition. At the end of the assessment, the family service worker works with the family to outline three no/low cost alternative actions to address the high- level concerns of the home. In addition, general asthma education is discussed. Follow-up visits at one and three months are made to assess whether the actions were performed.
The intervention has improved asthma and allergy symptoms significantly. As a result of the project's effect and positive feedback from families, more Head Start centers across the state are starting Healthy Homes, Head Start Projects in their areas.
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