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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(9), 900; doi:10.3390/ijerph13090900

Evaluation of a Home-Based Environmental and Educational Intervention to Improve Health in Vulnerable Households: Southeastern Pennsylvania Lead and Healthy Homes Program

1
Public Health Management Corporation, Centre Square East 1500 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19102, USA
2
Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso, 500 W. University Ave., El Paso, TX 79968, USA
3
National Nurse-Led Care Consortium, Centre Square East 1500 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19102, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 30 April 2016 / Revised: 10 August 2016 / Accepted: 5 September 2016 / Published: 9 September 2016
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Abstract

This evaluation examined whether participation in a home-based environmental educational intervention would reduce exposure to health and safety hazards and asthma-related medical visits. The home intervention program focused on vulnerable, low-income households, where children had asthma, were at risk for lead poisoning, or faced multiple unsafe housing conditions. Home visitors conducted two home visits, two months apart, consisting of an environmental home assessment, Healthy Homes education, and distribution of Healthy Homes supplies. Measured outcomes included changes in participant knowledge and awareness of environmental home-based hazards, rate of children’s asthma-related medical use, and the presence of asthma triggers and safety hazards. Analysis of 2013–2014 baseline and post-intervention program data for a cohort of 150 families revealed a significantly lower three-month rate (p < 0.05) of children’s asthma-related doctor visits and hospital admissions at program completion. In addition, there were significantly reduced reports of the presence of home-based hazards, including basement or roof leaks (p = 0.011), plumbing leaks (p = 0.019), and use of an oven to heat the home (p < 0.001). Participants’ pre- and post- test scores showed significant improvement (p < 0.05) in knowledge and awareness of home hazards. Comprehensive home interventions may effectively reduce environmental home hazards and improve the health of asthmatic children in the short term. View Full-Text
Keywords: environmental health; health disparities; housing; health education; childhood asthma; injury prevention; childhood lead poisoning; home health; home safety; healthy homes environmental health; health disparities; housing; health education; childhood asthma; injury prevention; childhood lead poisoning; home health; home safety; healthy homes
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Mankikar, D.; Campbell, C.; Greenberg, R. Evaluation of a Home-Based Environmental and Educational Intervention to Improve Health in Vulnerable Households: Southeastern Pennsylvania Lead and Healthy Homes Program. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 900.

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