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How asthma-friendly is your child-care setting?

June 10, 2008 - 7:30am
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How asthma-friendly is your child-care setting?


Children with asthma need proper support in child-care settings to keep their asthma under control and be fully active. Use the questions below to find out how well your child-care setting assists children with asthma:

1. Is the child-care setting free of tobacco smoke at all times? Yes No

2. Is there good ventilation in the child-care setting? Yes No

3. Are allergens and irritants that can make asthma worse reduced or eliminated? Yes No

4. Check if any of the following are present:

  • Cockroaches Yes No
  • Dust mites (commonly found in humid climates in pillows, carpets, upholstery, and stuffed toys) Yes No
  • Mold Yes No
  • Pets with fur or feathers Yes No
  • Strong odors or fumes from art and craft supplies, pesticides, paint, perfumes, air fresheners, and cleaning chemicals Yes No

5. Is there a medical or nursing consultant available to help staff write policy and guidelines for managing medications in the child-care setting, reducing allergens and irritants, promoting safe physical activities, and planning field trips for students with asthma? Yes No

6. Are child-care staff prepared to give medications as prescribed by each child's physician and authorized by each child's parent? Yes No

7. May children carry their own asthma medicines when appropriate? Is there someone available to supervise children while taking asthma medicines and monitor correct inhaler use? Yes No

8. Is there a written, individualized emergency plan for each child in case of a severe asthma episode (attack)? Yes No

9. Does the plan make clear what action to take? Whom to call? When to call? Yes No

10. Does a nurse, respiratory therapist, or other knowledgeable person teach child-care staff about asthma, asthma management plans, reducing allergens and irritants, and asthma medicines? Yes No

11. Does someone teach all the children about asthma and how to help a classmate who has it? Yes No

12. Does the child-care provider help children with asthma participate safely in physical activities? For example, are children encouraged to be active? Yes No

13. Can children take or be given their medicine before exercise? Are modified or alternative activities when medically necessary?) Yes No

If the answer to any question is "no," children in your child-care setting may be facing obstacles to controlling their asthma. Uncontrolled asthma can hinder a child's attendance, participation, and progress in school. Child-care staff, health professionals, and parents can work together to remove obstacles and promote children's health and development. Contact the organizations listed on the index page for information about asthma and helpful ideas for making school policies and practices more asthma-friendly. Federal and State laws are in place to help children with asthma..


National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.



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