A randomized controlled trial of parental asthma coaching to improve outcomes among urban minority children

Kyle A. Nelson, Gabriele R. Highstein, Jane Garbutt, Kathryn Trinkaus, Edwin B. Fisher, Sharon R. Smith, Robert C. Strunk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Objectives: To investigate whether asthma coaching decreases emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations and increases outpatient asthma monitoring visits. Design: Randomized controlled trial. Setting: Urban tertiary care children's hospital. Participants: Primary caregivers (hereafter referred to as parents) of children aged 2 to 10 years with asthma who have Medicaid insurance coverage and are urban residents who were attending the ED for acute asthma care. Intervention: Eighteen months of participating in usual care (control group) vs receiving coaching focused on asthma home management, completion of periodic outpatient asthma monitoring visits, and development of a collaborative relationship with a primary care provider (intervention group). Main Outcome Measures: The primary outcome was ED visits. Secondary outcomes were hospitalizations and asthma monitoring visits (nonacute visits focused on asthma care). Outcomes were measured during the year before and 2 years after enrollment. Results: We included 120 intervention parents and 121 control parents. More children of coached parents had at least 1 asthma monitoring visit after enrollment (relative risk [RR], 1.21; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.04-1.41), but proportions with at least 4 asthma monitoring visits during 2 years were low (20.0% in the intervention group vs 9.9% in the control group). Similar proportions of children in both study groups had at least 1 ED visit (59.2% in the intervention group vs 62.8% in the control group; RR, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.77-1.15) and at least 1 hospitalization (24.2% in the intervention group vs 26.4% in the control group; 0.91; 0.59-1.41) after enrollment. An ED visit after enrollment was more likely if an ED visit had occurred before enrollment (RR, 1.46; 95% CI, 1.16-1.86; adjusted for study group), but risk was similar in both study groups when adjusted for previous ED visits (1.02; 0.82-1.27). Conclusion: This parental asthma coaching intervention increased outpatient asthma monitoring visits (although infrequent) but did not decrease ED visits. Trial Registration: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00149500.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)520-526
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011

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