Contra Costa Board To Hear Coalition, Then Proclaim Asthma Awareness Month
May 3, 2004
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In recognition of a disease suffered by one of every eight Californians, the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors is expected Tuesday to proclaim Asthma Awareness Month after hearing a presentation by the Contra Costa County Asthma Coalition.
The presentation is scheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 4, in the Board chambers at 651 Pine Street in Martinez. It will include at least one child with asthma speaking about her condition.
"We are happy the Board recognizes the severe impact of asthma on Contra Costa's health," said Aimee Chitayat, executive director of the Community Clinic Consortium of Contra Costa County, a member of the Asthma Coalition.
The Contra Costa County Asthma Coalition is an inclusive, broad-based partnership of organizations and individuals whose mission is to strengthen Contra Costa's ability to prevent asthma and improve the lives of people affected by asthma. The Coalition has a variety of activities and programs planned during May and year-round to raise awareness about asthma.
One member of the Coalition, the American Lung Association, recently began asthma education services in Head Start and pre-schools in Contra Costa. Another, the West County Asthma Coalition, is launching a program Tuesday providing free in-home "asthma trigger" checkups to West County residents.
John Muir - Mt. Diablo Health Systems is conducting a program to provide Mt. Diablo school district teachers, administrators and staff with education and tools to help asthmatic children. Brookside Community Health Center and La Clinica de La Raza provide medical and care management services for adults and children with asthma.
These programs and more are how the coalition addresses this health crisis locally, said Chitayat.
"The prevalence of asthma has been increasing steadily over the past 20 years, with the largest increases among children under the age of five," said Chitayat. "Rates are also higher in urban, low-income and minority communities."
According to a recent survey, African-American children in Contra Costa are four times more likely to be hospitalized for asthma compared to white, non- Hispanic children.
For more information, call the Community Clinic Consortium of Contra Costa at 510-233-6230.
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- Aimee Chitayat