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Community Health Interventions to Advance Self-Management of Asthma (CHI-ASMA) Project

AAFA’s Community Health Interventions to Advance Self-Management of Asthma (CHI-ASMA) project aims to help people with asthma improve asthma control. This will reduce asthma rates and deaths.

Chi-Asma Program ControlThe CHI-ASMA project is backed by a five-year, $1 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Our current grant cycle began on September 1, 2020.

CHI-ASMA programs will focus on serving people who have a higher risk for asthma. These groups include:

  • Black individuals
  • Hispanic individuals
  • American Indian/Alaska Native people
  • Senior adults
  • People who are pregnant, postpartum, or lactating
  • Children with asthma
  • Military members who developed asthma while in service

CHI-ASMA Follows CDC Strategies to Control Asthma

The CDC’s National Asthma Control Program (NACP) works to help people in the U.S. with asthma have better health and improved quality of life. The program funds states, territories, cities, school programs, and non-profits. Funding helps these organizations improve the tracking of asthma rates and trends. Programs funded by the NACP provide training for health professionals and education for people with asthma.

Through CHI-ASMA, AAFA will work with partners to promote NACP asthma strategies and interventions (known as EXHALE and CCARE).

CDC’s EXHALE Strategies to Control Asthma include:

  • Education on asthma self-management
  • X-tinguishing smoking and secondhand smoke
  • Home visits for trigger reduction and self-management education
  • Achievement of asthma guidelines-based medical management
  • Linkages to the coordination of care across settings
  • Environmental policies or best practices to reduce indoor, outdoor, and at-work asthma triggers

Controlling Childhood Asthma and Reducing Emergencies (CCARE) is an objective from the CDC that uses EXHALE strategies to reduce asthma and asthma-related emergencies in children. The goal is to prevent 500,000 emergency room visits and hospital stays due to asthma by Aug. 31, 2024.

AAFA’s CHI-ASMA Program Activities

Chi-ASMA Programs and ActivitiesCHI-ASMA will work to improve community health by:

  • Promoting guidelines-based asthma care  by developing programs (for clinicians, patients, and caregivers) that align with the 2020 Focused Updates to the Asthma Management Guidelines
  • Promoting guidelines-based asthma care for military service members
  • Improving asthma health during pregnancy
  • Working with community health workers (CHWs) to reduce asthma triggers in the home
  • Launching three national awareness campaigns on:
    • Respiratory illnesses like the flu, COVID-19, and RSV and their impact on asthma
    • Asthma inhaler use and controlling symptoms
    • Allergic asthma in children

EXHALE and CCARE Resources

AAFA continues to develop evidence-based asthma and allergy education and resources for the CHI-ASMA project. Most of our resources fall under 6 main categories:

Educational Programs

Many of our educational programs touch on the whole EXHALE package and are available at no or low cost. Examples of EXHALE-specific courses include:

  • Asthma Management Education-Online (AME-O) for nurses or respiratory therapists
  • ASTHMA Care for Adults
  • Severe Asthma Care

To learn more about AAFA’s educational programs or to register for one of our courses, please visit our learning catalog at:

Patient/Caregiver Support

Support Center – AAFA’s support center acts as a hub for connecting people to our asthma and allergy resources, information, and direct support. We answer questions and provide support to patients, caregivers, community health workers (CHWs), school nurses, student researchers, health departments, and more. You can connect with our support center through our email contact form or through our toll-free number at 1-800-7-ASTHMA (1-800-727-8462). AAFA’s patient and caregiver support materials also support EXHALE and CCARE strategies.

AAFA Educational Resources – AAFA has many free downloadable and printed resources that are available through our online store. Items can be ordered individually or as customized educational packets for patients, family members, and the public at no charge. Available resources include asthma awareness items, asthma action plans, information on the flu and pneumococcal disease, guides for inhaler usage and managing asthma, educational materials for health care professionals, Spanish language resources, and more.

Spanish Language Resources – Some of our programs and printed resources are available in Spanish. These pieces can be ordered directly from our store, or we can customize an information pack for your needs.

AAFA’s Ask the Allergist – AAFA’s Ask the Allergist is a free service for people with asthma and allergies and their caregivers. Our allergists provide general advice about managing asthma or allergies, medicines, and treatments. Ask the Allergist does not answer questions about specific consumer products. This information is not a substitute for medical advice from a physician.

AAFA’s YouTube Channel – Check out our YouTube channel where we post public service announcements, videos, webinars, and other asthma and allergy awareness content.

Social Media Channels – AAFA shares asthma and allergy facts, infographics, images, and other information through several social media channels. We encourage you to raise asthma and allergy awareness on your social media accounts, as well. Check out our social media tools, and be sure to follow us on FacebookInstagramYouTubeTikTok, and Pinterest!

Online Communities – AAFA’s online communities are a great place for people with asthma and allergies, caregivers, and professionals who support them. Our online communities offer members opportunities to:

  • Take polls
  • Learn about AAFA’s webinars
  • Read our blog for lifestyle tips
  • Keep current with asthma and allergy research
  • Connect with trained AAFA staff
  • Access evidence-based resource
  • Receive peer support from other people who live with asthma and allergies

Our community platform is secure, and community members can set their usernames to protect their identity.

Online Support Group for Military Members and Their Families – AAFA promotes guidelines-based care for military members and their families by providing an online support group. This is a private support group on our online community that provides peer support for military members, veterans, and their families who manage asthma. Members learn about asthma and share and receive support for asthma-related issues or disabilities caused by exposure during service. The support group is also a space where members can exchange information on choosing the right Tricare insurance level to gain access to specialists, how to access VA benefits, and more.

Health Equity

AAFA offers health equity resources that support all EXHALE strategies.

Asthma Disparities Report 2020 – AAFA’s report examines how asthma affects Black, Hispanic, and Indigenous populations in the United States. This report is an update to AAFA’s 2005 report on asthma disparities. It also aims to identify strategies to promote systemic change. The main goal of this report is to guide AAFA and stakeholders to prioritize policies and programs to address asthma disparities and provide an action plan for sustainable solutions.

Asthma Disparities Statistics and Graphics – AAFA provides free graphics on asthma disparities facts, such as:

Health Equity Advancement and Leadership (HEAL) ProgramHEAL is the umbrella for AAFA’s health equity work. This initiative was launched to address findings from AAFA’s Asthma Disparities in America report and aligns with AAFA’s strategic focus on promoting health equity. AAFA funds local interventions (programs) through our HEAL awards. This is a multiyear project with the goal of building and supporting community-based interventions to address inequities in asthma and allergic diseases.

Partnerships with Community Health Workers (CHWs) – AAFA supports and partners with CHWs. We are currently collaborating with the Texas Association of Promotores and Community Health Workers (TAPCHW). on a pilot project in Texas. The project aims to outsource CHWs within the community who would refer people who visit urgent care centers and emergency departments to asthma specialists. We are also collaborating with the National Association of Community Health Workers on the development of a needs assessment to identify needed resources among the CHW workforce.

Healthy Indoor Settings

An important part of asthma management is understanding and reducing indoor allergens and asthma triggers. This also helps improve indoor air quality. AAFA takes a multi-pronged approach to empower and teach patients and caregivers about managing indoor triggers. AAFA has resources for homes, workplaces, and schools. AAFA’s healthy indoor settings resources also support the E,X,H,E components of the EXHALE technical package and CCARE strategies.

asthma & allergy friendly® Certification Program – The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America joined with Allergy Standards Limited to create the asthma & allergy friendly® Certification Program. This program helps people make informed purchases for a healthier home. We test household products against strict standards. If products pass our tests, they earn the CERTIFIED asthma & allergy friendly® mark. When you see this mark, you know the product is proven to be better suited for those with asthma and allergies.

Interactive Healthier Homes Tips – Good indoor air quality is an important part of a healthy indoor space. People spend more than 90% of their time indoors, and indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. Our interactive Healthier Home has tips to help you improve air quality and reduce asthma and allergy triggers for each room or area of the home like the kitchen, living room, garage, and basement.

Asthma-Friendly Home Checklist – Our free, downloadable Asthma-Friendly Home ChecklistDownload PDF helps people learn more about asthma triggers in the home and how to control them. This checklist gives a list of questions, information on the most common triggers, and ways people can identify and reduce triggers. It can be used as part of a home visit or people can work through it on their own. Renters can share a printed version with their landlord if they have maintenance or building issues. This checklist is also available in SpanishDownload PDF.

Healthy Workspaces – The workplace can also have asthma and allergy triggers. Asthma, depending on how severe it is, is often considered a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). AAFA provides tips and an Asthma-Friendly Work and School Spaces ChecklistDownload PDFto help people talk with their manager or someone in human resources about accommodations to reduce workplace triggers.

Managing Asthma in Schools

In the United States, more than 53 million children and 6 million adults spend a large part of their days in more than 120,000 public and private schools. Having an asthma management plan for each child at school can reduce asthma flares and missed school days. Missed school days for kids often mean missed workdays for parents. AAFA offers resources to help manage asthma in schools. These resources support the E, H, L, E components of the EXHALE technical package and CCARE strategies.

State Honor Roll – AAFA’s State Honor Roll Report provides a list of state policies aimed at keeping people in schools healthy. The report checks how every state compares against 23 key measures that affect people with asthma and allergies in schools. AAFA supports policies and programs that protect students with asthma in schools. It is our goal to see each state have current and appropriate asthma management programs in place for students and staff.

State Honor Roll Spotlight: Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in Schools – Poor IAQ contributes to the number of school days children miss because of asthma and allergies. AAFA’s State Honor Roll report featured a spotlight article on IAQ in schoolsDownload PDF, which explains how poor IAQ increases the risk of severe asthma attacks and allergic reactions. The article highlights common asthma triggers in schools, top causes for poor IAQ in schools, signs that poor IAQ is affecting a child’s health, and ways to improve IAQ.

Stock Albuterol in Schools – AAFA encourages states to adopt policies that promote access to life-saving medicines to treat students and staff who experience asthma attacks or severe allergic reactions. This includes stock albuterol to be used in emergencies, appropriately training school personnel, and addressing liability concerns for those who use this medicine in good faith.

Local Asthma Resources for Schools – AAFA’s St. Louis chapter runs a RESCUE program for schools in the St. Louis, Missouri, metro area. This chapter has worked with state legislatures to pass laws needed to support stock emergency medicines. They worked with a local pharmacy partner for medicine access for schools. The program is expanding into Missouri and Illinois thanks to state level grants in those states.

Managing Asthma and Allergies at School – AAFA’s School Zone has many resources for managing asthma and allergies at school for parents, caregivers, school staff, and care center staff. It’s important that every child with asthma has a School Health Care Plan. There are three different types of plans – emergency care plans (ECP), individual health care plans (IHCP), and 504 plans. We offer information about each of these plans to help parents know which one is right for their child. We also have information about how to best partner with schools.

A Parent’s Guide to Asthma Care at School – AAFA hosted a webinar for parents and caregivers that provided information on asthma school toolkits, establishing an asthma care team, communicating with your child’s health care provider, school nurse, and teacher, and advocating for your child.

School-Based Asthma, Allergy, Anaphylaxis Management Program (SA3MPRO™) – AAFA offers asthma resources and toolkits for schools, including SA3MPRO™. SA3MPRO™ is a toolkit that was created in collaboration with the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (AAAAI). It is based on creating a communication network centered around the child. This communication network includes clinicians, school nurses, and families. SA3MPRO™ is a great resource for school nurses or CHWs who connect with kids in a school setting.

Parental Health and Asthma

Asthma During Pregnancy Resources – Asthma is one of the most common medical concerns that occurs during pregnancy. AAFA provides resources for pregnant and lactating people who have asthma. AAFA’s webpage and handoutDownload PDF provide information on asthma during pregnancy. Topics include asthma complications during pregnancy, how uncontrolled asthma affects the fetus, ways to avoid asthma attacks during pregnancy, safety of asthma medications, allergy shots, and vaccines during pregnancy, and more. AAFA’s asthma during pregnancy resources also support the E,A,L components of the EXHALE technical package.

Breathe 4 Baby Resources – The Breathe 4 Baby resources were developed in partnership with the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) and includes a Pregnancy and Lactation Asthma Action Plan and a Pregnancy Asthma Control Test. The Asthma Action Plan and Asthma Control Test are available in English and Spanish. This resource aims to create a foundation of support that would enhance multidirectional communication between pregnant and lactating people and providers and promote better patient care. AAFA’s Breathe 4 Baby resources also support the E,A,L components of the EXHALE technical package.

Join AAFA to Improve Asthma Health

For people managing asthma for themselves or caregivers:

Join AAFA’s support community at Becoming a member helps you:

  • Stay up to date about asthma and allergies
  • Connect with other people who live with asthma
  • Get invites to special online events

For community or public health workers, media, and other organizations:

If you would like to work with AAFA on CHI-ASMA or other projects, please contact us:

Asthma Disparities Report