Home-based interventions attempt to involve family members in helping individuals to manage their asthma. For example, through interactions between children and parents or guardians, families can help to prevent the onset of asthma attacks through rules about keeping the house clean and free from allergens. Likewise, the family is a useful source of social support for coping with symptoms of asthma and other related challenges (e.g., social acceptance, activity restrictions).
Previous work in home-based settings has found:
- Given the evidence for the efficacy of home-based programs in improving parenting skills of low-income parents of preschool children, a home-based program to improve asthma management may be the most developmentally appropriate and ecologically valid method of delivering education to low-income, inner-city families.
- Responsibility for day-to-day asthma management rests with a child’s caregivers. Therefore, a home-based program is a way to overcome barriers that other interventions may face. For example, literacy and time constraints can hamper the use of written materials. Lack of transportation, schedule conflicts and busy parental lifestyles can be reasons that may limit participation in community-based health programs. Lastly, internet technology is not accessible to all families.
- Intervention strategies in home-based settings often emphasize emotional support (encouragement for dealing with the psychosocial challenges) alone or in addition to other forms of support. Intervention strategies in home-based settings often emphasize parent/family involvement recommending participation in activities together (e.g., homework assignments, special classes for parents while children are in classes, support groups for parents).
- Asthma programs delivered to individuals in their homes can provide effective management and education and may be more cost effective than hospitalization.
- Home-based programs are particularly pertinent to community members who are unable to access education classes offered in the community (i.e., individuals with physical disability, limited mobility, no access to transportation, etc).
- The Internet is becoming an increasingly popular way to provide asthma information for those living in rural areas with limited reach and availability of programs, as well as those who are homebound.
- Education sessions can be incorporated into existing infrastructure for asthma education in order to provide long-term support for asthma self management behaviors.
- Interventions in individual’s homes tended to focus on policies and environmental changes to reduce exposure to asthma triggers.
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