EPA Honors Exceptional Program Tackling Asthma Disparities during Asthma Awareness Month
WASHINGTON (May 3, 2022) – Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency celebrates the start of Asthma Awareness Month by recognizing the Utah Department of Health Asthma Program with the 2022 National Environmental Leadership Award in Asthma Management. This recognition is part of EPA’s ongoing effort to increase public awareness of asthma and partner with thousands of organizations taking action to protect public health and reduce the risks from asthma in communities across the nation.
“Addressing the ongoing threat asthma poses to children and adults is crucial in our work to deliver public health protections,” said Joe Goffman, Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. “By working together with organizations like the Utah Asthma Program, we are making a real difference to protect the 24 million Americans, including 5.5 million children, living with asthma. Residents in underserved and overburdened communities impacted by asthma are breathing easier because of programs like this.”
During Asthma Awareness Month, EPA places special emphasis on encouraging state and local asthma programs to increase awareness of asthma triggers and the proven approaches for reducing exposures in homes and schools. And each year, as part of its commitment to improving the lives of Americans with asthma, EPA recognizes outstanding community-based programs with the National Environmental Leadership Award.
Utah Department of Health Asthma Program
The Utah Department of Health Asthma Program (UAP) is committed to expanding the reach, quality, effectiveness, and sustainability of comprehensive asthma control services in Utah. The UAP serves the entire state, with a focus on disproportionately impacted communities—urban, suburban and rural. UAP’s distinguishing features include several innovative projects and strong partnerships with healthcare systems and the Utah Medicaid program. One example is the Asthma Home Visiting Program, an in-home asthma self-management program that has been shown to reduce severe asthma outcomes. Those who complete the program report a 75% reduction in asthma-related emergency department visits and nearly 90% reduction in asthma-related hospitalizations. And the program is cost effective with a return on investment of about $3 saved in reduced asthma-related emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations for every $1 spent on services.