Fund Supports Asthma Control Program for Underserved Colorado Counties

Denver-based National Jewish Health will pilot an asthma care and prevention program aimed at children in six underserved, rural counties in Colorado with support from the Jessie Ball duPont Fund.

The Fund’s trustees awarded $70,920 to National Jewish to support the program, which will be delivered through public schools in the San Luis Valley region.

The San Luis Valley is located about 250 miles southwest of Denver. In the six targeted counties, median household income is less than $35,000 and student rates of free and reduced lunch range from 67%-87% across school districts. Research indicates that 12-14% of children in the region have asthma, which may be associated with high particulate matter resulting from poor home heating practices. Most of the young asthma patients have persistent asthma and more than half missed school as a result of the disease.

National Jewish will pilot a school-based program that teaches children to be managers of their disease and provide closer monitoring and care coordination with their family and health providers.

National Jewish has a long history of work in asthma prevention among underserved communities, much of it supported by the Jessie Ball duPont Fund. Since 2001, the Fund has invested more than $680,000 with National Jewish to support asthma care with various special populations as well as research into the health care needs of children in the San Luis Valley.

“National Jewish’s outreach to underserved populations is commendable and in keeping with the mission and values of the Jessie Ball duPont Fund,” said Sherry Magill, president of the Fund. “They have proven to be excellent stewards of the Fund’s investments.”