Asthma Successes

Respiratory Health Association is working to understand and address asthma in Chicago, at the state level, and nationally through education, research and policy change. RHA is widely recognized as an asthma leader; below are some of the milestone achievements in our asthma efforts.

Cool Timeline

New Fight Asthma Now© Record Set

On June 15, 2017, RHA's asthma program team, including three National Health Corps (NHC) members, set a new record by educating 1,962 students with asthma. RHA staff fostered relationships with new community partners and as a result increased RHA’s reach to new schools in high need communities. Fight Asthma Now© is RHA's free…
Read More

Peoria Coal Plant Told to Clean Up

A federal judge sides with a coalition of environmental and health groups, including Respiratory Health Association, in a lawsuit filed against Peoria's E.D. Edwards coal plant alleging that the company is "emitting an excessive amount of soot pollution."

Statewide asthma emergency protocol established

RHA leads efforts to pass statewide legislation to improve asthma emergency protocol in schools. The legislation requires the Illinois State Board of Education to develop a model emergency response protocol, and for school districts to implement their emergency protocols by January 1, 2017. The legislation also requires school staff who…
Read More

Illinois Schools Required to Adopt Asthma Protocols

Illinois Public Act 099-0843 is signed by Governor Bruce Rauner on August 19, 2016, requiring Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to develop a model asthma episode emergency response protocol, and for each school district, charter school, and non-public school to adopt a similar protocol, including all the components of the…
Read More

Children with Asthma in D.C. receive RHA’s asthma education programs

At the request of Breathe D.C., RHA trained select staff to deliver RHA’s Fight Asthma Now © and Asthma Management programs at select schools in D.C. According to Rolando A. Andrewn, President and CEO of Breathe DC INC, “Breathe DC is committed to improving the health of the District’s children…
Read More

Courage to Quit and Fight Asthma Now Programs Expand Reach

Respiratory Health Association trains health educators outside Chicago in its two signature programs, Courage to Quit®, an evidence-based program to help people (particularly members of populations vulnerable to tobacco) quit smoking, and Fight Asthma Now©, RHA’s asthma self-management course for school-aged children. National Urban League® hires RHA to train tobacco…
Read More

CPS Approves Asthma Policy

On January 26, 2012, Chicago Public School Board of Education approves a new asthma policy, increasing awareness and support of students with asthma. The new policy reduces barriers for students to carry and self-medicate using their quick-relief inhalers. It also requires administrators to ask for information about students with asthma at…
Read More

Students allowed to self-carry and self-administer asthma medication with only a parental note

Governor Quinn signed new, RHA-sponsored legislation into effect that allows children to carry and administer their quick-relief asthma inhalers at school with strictly parental consent. Students now only need to submit note from a parent or guardian and a copy of their prescription having previously required physician consent. RHA sought…
Read More

Illinois teachers required to receive chronic disease training

Working with the Stakeholders Collaborative to Improve Student Health, RHA is successful in passing legislation to require schools to provide chronic disease awareness education to teachers.

RHA launches Fight Asthma Now and Asthma Management education programs in Chicago

RHA developed its validated, Fight Asthma Now© and an accompanying Asthma Management program for adult caregivers of children with asthma including parents, school staff, day care providers, and park district staff. The goal of these programs is to better arm children with asthma and their adult caregivers the health education…
Read More

Illinois law authorizes students to self-carry and self-administer auto-epinephrine injectors in school

RHA leads efforts to pass a law protecting the rights of students to carry their prescribed epinephrine during the school day.  The Illinois General Assembly passes Public Act 94-0792 to amend Section 22-30 of the School Code to address self-administration of epinephrine auto-injectors. The amendment provides that a school must…
Read More

Illinois Medicaid increases reimbursement for spacers and peakflow meters

Through community outreach RHA learned that individuals were denied coverage of additional spacers and peak flow meters. Because of advocacy by our organization, Medicaid reimbursement for Spacers and Peakflow meters increased from one per year to four per year with no prior authorization needed.

Illinois law allows children to carry asthma inhalers at summer camp

After months of advocacy by RHA and other organizations, the Illinois General Assembly enacts PA 96-670, which authorizes children living with asthma to self-carry and self-administer their asthma medication while at a recreational camp.

Illinois Department of Public Aid required to evaluate current standards of treatment of asthma

Public Act 094-0328 requires the Department of Public Aid to evaluate current standards of treatment of asthma for its beneficiaries. The review may include state-of-the-art programs in asthma disease management as well as evidence-based best practices for the early diagnosis, treatment, and control of asthma, particularly in children.

Illinois Department of Public Health develops asthma management plan

Along with partners, RHA organization supports Public Act 093-1015 which requires the Illinois Department of Public Health to develop a comprehensive statewide asthma management plan and for IDPH to provide leadership in Illinois for and coordination of asthma prevention and intervention activities. RHA has continued to place asthma at the…
Read More

Insurers prohibited from restricting inhaler coverage

RHA lead efforts to prohibit insurance companies from restricting coverage of inhalers based on refill frequency.  Based on feedback from the community RHA learned of restrictions some individuals had in accessing their lifesaving medication. RHA then worked with partners to change state law to protect the coverage of inhalers.

RHA Receives $2 Million Grant to Address Pediatric Asthma in Englewood

Merck Childhood Asthma Network awards Respiratory Health Association, in collaboration with University of Illinois School of Public Health, a four-year $2 million grant to address pediatric asthma in Chicago’s Englewood community. The project aims to teach parents and caregivers of children with asthma in Englewood how to better understand and…
Read More

Illinois law allows students to self-administer asthma medication

The Illinois General Assembly passes Public Act 92 0402 which allows primary and secondary students in Illinois self-administration their asthma medication while in school. Respiratory Health Association and its public health partners had advocated for months for better access to asthma medication in schools.  The law came into being after…
Read More

Illinois Adopts New Asthma “Right to Carry” Law

Illinois adopts legislation permitting schoolchildren with asthma to carry their quick relief asthma medication while at school, provided they have physician and parent approval. The legislation follows several asthma emergencies in which asthma medications were kept locked away in school and were unavailable when needed. Respiratory Health Association co-led the…
Read More

RHA creates Camp Action

RHA creates Camp Action, a weeklong summer camp for children with asthma, designed to help children enjoy outdoor activities and learn asthma management. Camp Action uses physicians, nurses and RHA staff to deliver asthma education and respond to asthma emergencies.