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May is Asthma Awareness Month

Take Action During Asthma Awareness Month

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a serious, life-threatening respiratory disease that affects more than 20 million Americans. Rates of asthma have risen sharply over the past 30 years, particularly among children ages 5 to 14. Although there is no cure for asthma yet, asthma can be controlled through medical treatment and management of environmental triggers.

Asthma Triggers

Learn more about elements found in the indoor and outdoor environment that can cause, trigger, or worsen asthma symptoms and what you can do to reduce their impact.

Preventing Asthma Attacks

Step 1: Talk to a doctor

If your child has asthma, or you think your child may have asthma, take your child to a doctor. Your doctor will work with you to keep your child from having asthma attacks.

Step 2: Make a plan

Work with your doctor to create an Asthma Action Plan that will help you learn to prevent your child’s asthma attacks and will help control your child's asthma on a regular basis. To help you work with your doctor to create an Asthma Action Plan for your individual circumstances, you can download a sample plan (PDF) (2 pp., 123K, About PDF).

When you and your doctor make the plan, be sure to include:

Step 3: Asthma-proof your home

Triggers are a part of everyday life. Learn more about things that might trigger an asthma attack, and what you can do to control or get rid of them and help your child stay healthy.

For More Information


Our Children

Protecting children, our youngest and most sensitive citizens, from environmental health risks is fundamental to EPA's mission of protecting human health and the environment. It is essential that children have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, safe food to eat, and a healthy environment in which to learn, grow and thrive. Children grow best in such environments.

Children may be more vulnerable to some environmental risks than adults for several reasons:

Major Environmental Concerns

These are the most common concerns for children in Region 7:

Mid-America Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit

The Mid-America Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit (MAPEHSU)Exit EPA Click for Disclaimeris the pediatric environmental health specialty unit (PEHSU) for the Region 7 states of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. The goal of the PEHSU Program is to increase the knowledge base of pediatric environmental medicine for health professionals by providing a forum for collaboration of environmental specialists and pediatricians.

TThe PEHSU is funded through a cooperative agreement with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and EPA Region 7. Funds are administered through the Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics (AOEC)Exit EPA Click for Disclaimer.

The MAPEHSU is dedicated to providing expert clinical, consultative, and educational services to improve the recognition and treatment of children's environmental health problems in the Region 7 states.

MAPEHSU services include:

Consultation - Medical consultation or advice from a physician or health care provider with expertise in pediatric environmental health

Referrals - Referrals to health agencies with an interest in pediatric environmental health

Education and Outreach - Pediatric environmental health-focused education and outreach to the medical community

Contact Information
For general inquiries, call the MAPEHSU toll-free at 1-800-421-9916.

EPA Region 7 Contact

LaTonya Sanders
Children's Health Coordinator
(913) 551-7555
sanders.latonya@epa.gov

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