Objectives: We assessed the effectiveness of a community health worker intervention focused on reducing exposure to indoor asthma triggers.
Methods: We conducted a randomized controlled trial with 1-year follow-up among 274 low-income households containing a child aged 4-12 years who had asthma. Community health workers provided in-home environmental assessments, education, support for behavior change, and resources. Participants were assigned to either a high-intensity group receiving 7 visits and a full set of resources or a low-intensity group receiving a single visit and limited resources.
Results: The high-intensity group improved significantly more than the low-intensity group in its pediatric asthma caregiver quality-of-life score (P=.005) and asthma-related urgent health services use (P=.026). Asthma symptom days declined more in the high-intensity group, although the across-group difference did not reach statistical significance (P=.138). Participant actions to reduce triggers generally increased in the high-intensity group. The projected 4-year net savings per participant among the high-intensity group relative to the low-intensity group were 189-721 dollars.
Conclusions: Community health workers reduced asthma symptom days and urgent health services use while improving caregiver quality-of-life score. Improvement was greater with a higher-intensity intervention.