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ASPPH Fellow Develops “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series: A Tailored Asthma Health Education Resource for Adolescents and Emerging Adults

A graduate of Emory University, Rollins School of Public Health, Ms. DeAndra Morris, is a current ASPPH/National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Public Health Fellow, and a former ASPPH/Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Environmental Health Fellow. During her participation in the ASPPH/EPA Environmental Health Fellowship Program, Ms. Morris was hosted by the EPA’s Indoor Environments Division where she researched and developed her fellowship project, the “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series.

The “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series focuses on providing health education about indoor environmental asthma triggers to adolescents and emerging adults with asthma. The series was created to assist health educators, public health professionals, health care providers, organizations, and others in their efforts to provide adolescents and emerging adults with information about indoor environmental asthma triggers.

In this infographic series, adolescence is defined as the developmental period between childhood and adulthood that roughly occurs from the ages of 10–18 years old (Arnett, 2000; Jaworksa & MacQueen, 2015). According to Arnett’s Emerging Adulthood Theory, emerging adulthood is defined as the developmental period between adolescence and young adulthood that occurs from the ages of 18–29 years old, with a specific focus on the ages of 18–25 (Arnett, 2000; Arnett, 2007). Additionally, adolescence and emerging adulthood are the developmental periods characterized by high school or college attendance, the transition from high school to college, workforce entry, transition from pediatric to adult-centered health care, independence, and increased awareness of and responsibility for asthma management (Arnett, 2000; Arnett, 2007; Blum, Garell, Hodgman, Jorissen, Okinow, Orr, & Slap, 1993; Houtrow & Newacheck, 2008).

The data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2015 and 2016 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates include the age group categories of 15–19 and 20–24, which represent these adolescence and emerging adulthood developmental periods. The CDC 2015 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates* data indicated that adolescents and emerging adults had the highest and fourth highest current asthma prevalence rates, respectively, among all other age groups (CDC, 2018a). The recently published CDC 2016 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates* data also indicates a high current asthma prevalence among these populations, with adolescents and emerging adults having the second and third highest current asthma prevalence rates, respectively, among all other age groups (CDC, 2018b).

The current high asthma prevalence among adolescents and emerging adults suggests that there may be a need for tailored asthma health education materials targeted toward adolescents and emerging adults with asthma, specifically for those between the ages of 15–24. However, a review of literature shows that there are many asthma health education resources and materials for children, but there are limited asthma health education resources and materials tailored and targeted towards adolescents and emerging adults. “It’s Asthma” addresses this need.

The “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series provides adolescents and emerging adults with information and guidance as they begin to take more responsibility for their asthma management and control. This tailored health education resource provides information about indoor environmental asthma triggers and strategies to reduce trigger exposure, which can promote and assist adolescents and emerging adults with their asthma management. The “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series is available in two formats—the long format and short format. The long format provides more details about each trigger, and is available in two color schemes. Additionally, the short format can be used for initial engagement about the topic and to signal availability of the resource through social media posts, brochures, handouts, etc.
Learn more and access the “It’s Asthma” Infographic Series on Google Drive.

* The CDC 2015 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates are based on the 2015 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) Data, and the CDC 2016 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates data are based on the 2016 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) Data.

[Photo: CDC 2015 National Current Asthma Prevalence Rates – Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2018)]

 

[Photo: Final Version of the It’s Asthma Infographic Series]