A University of Washington School of Public Health center has launched a five-year project to reduce the exposure of children in agricultural settings to substances that trigger asthma.
The “Home Air in Agriculture, Pediatric Intervention Trial” is funded by a $2.5 million grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The principal investigator is Dr. Catherine Karr, associate professor of environmental and occupational health sciences and pediatrics.
The project, based at the School’s Pacific Northwest Agricultural and Safety and Health Center, focuses on a community of largely Latino children of farm-working families in areas of intense agricultural production in eastern Washington. The study will examine the effectiveness of high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) purifiers in the homes of children with asthma. Previous research led by Dr. Karr has found asthma health of children living near large agricultural farms may be worsened by poor air quality. The project will be conducted as part of El Proyecto Bienestar, an environmental and occupational health research partnership of PNASH, the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic, Northwest Communities Education Center/Radio KDNA and Heritage College.