Outcomes of a School-Based Asthma Education Program: An Evidence-Based Practice Project
Rohrbacher, Jennifer A.
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<p>The identified problem in school-aged children is a lack of education to recognize triggers, symptoms, and methods to self-manage asthma episodes. The PICOT statement of interest was: In children 8 to 12 years old, does implementation of the <em>Open Airways for Schools, </em>a school-based program for asthma management versus no previous program for asthma management affect knowledge, avoidance of triggers, school absenteeism, and peak flow readings following six group sessions of asthma education over a three week period. The purpose of the evidence-based practice project was to connect the identified problem and the needs of children to cope with asthma while at school through implementation of a school-based asthma education program. Evidence suggests that education encourages health promotion behaviors by mitigating the negative effects of this chronic disease to achieve an optimum level of control. The Model for Evidence-Based Practice Change guided the implementation process. The <em>Open Airways</em> <em>for Schools </em>program was implemented over a total of six sessions twice weekly to children 8 to 12 years old (N= 19) with the diagnosis of asthma. The children who met inclusion criteria attended sessions during their lunch period. The sessions were based upon the six educational sessions outlined in the program curriculum. A comparison of the pre and post questionnaire demonstrated gains in asthma knowledge. The students recognized the importance of avoiding asthma triggers post program implementation. Additionally, a decrease in school absenteeism and an increase in peak flow meter results from initial reading to post program reading over a three-week implementation period were exhibited. Recommendations for implementation are provided.<strong></strong></p>