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EPA recognizes Midwest asthma management programs

Release Date: 02/09/2007
Contact Information: CONTACT: William Omohundro, (312) 353-8254, omohundro.william@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 07-OPA022

CHICAGO (Feb. 9, 2007) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 recognized four winners of EPA's National Exemplary Award for asthma management programs last night at a ceremony in Chicago. The winners will serve as models for other asthma programs across the country.

"The diversity of these programs demonstrates that there are many different innovative strategies to address asthma management," said EPA Region 5 Administrator Mary Gade. "We hope that by recognizing these organizations we can encourage the adoption of best practices."

Award winners are: Fight Asthma Milwaukee Allies, a hospital-based program in Wisconsin; Priority Health, a health plan company in Michigan; Genesee County Childhood Asthma Task Force, a county-based program in Michigan; and Asthma Alliance of Indianapolis, a county health department-based program in Indiana.

The award winners were selected for their outstanding leadership, strong community ties, high-performing collaborations and partnerships, work with health care providers, environmental interventions tailored to fit an individual's health or education needs, and positive health outcomes for those they serve.

In addition, EPA recognized six regional Partners for Asthma Action. These are promising regional programs that haven't met the criteria for a national award, yet. They are: Greater Cleveland Asthma Coalition Asthma-Friendly Schools Program, Ohio; Allen County Asthma Coalition, Indiana; Washington County Public Health and Environment Catching Our Breath Initiative, Minnesota; Dane County Asthma Coalition, Wisconsin; Suburban Asthma Consortium, Asthma STAR Project, Illinois; and Southwest Michigan Asthma Coalition, Michigan.

Of the approximately 20 million Americans with asthma, more than six million are children. The disease remains one of the leading causes of emergency room visits and school absenteeism for children with chronic diseases. Although there is no known cure for asthma, there are ways to reduce the number of attacks, including avoiding exposure to environmental asthma triggers at home, school, and other places where children spend their time.

More information on asthma is at http://www.epa.gov/asthma.

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