School-supervised use of a once-daily inhaled corticosteroid regimen: A cluster randomized trial

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2019 Feb;143(2):755-764. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2018.06.048. Epub 2018 Aug 14.


Background: School-supervised use of a once-daily inhaled corticosteroid regimen (supervised therapy) can improve medication adherence and asthma control.

Objective: We sought to evaluate the effectiveness of supervised therapy in a unique setting and population.

Methods: We conducted a cluster randomized trial of supervised therapy in 20 elementary schools with a disproportionate enrollment of low-income Latino students. Schools were purposively selected, matched, and randomized to receive 9 months of supervised therapy with mometasone furoate or usual care. All English- or Spanish-speaking students with self-reported asthma were eligible. The Asthma Control Questionnaire (ACQ) was interviewer administered quarterly at school. Students in supervised therapy schools were hypothesized to have lower ACQ scores than students in usual-care schools.

Results: Of 393 enrolled students, 189 students receiving immediate intervention and 143 students receiving delayed intervention provided 1 or more ACQ data points, were between 6 and 10 years of age, and were included in the primary analysis. At baseline, 39% of students reported taking a controller medication, and 24% had well-controlled asthma. Eighty percent of students receiving immediate intervention were prescribed mometasone. Schools administered 98% of prescribed doses when students attended school. Absences, weekends, and holidays reduced calendar adherence to 53%. During the first year, the mean ACQ score for students receiving immediate and delayed intervention was 1.55 (95% CI, 1.41-1.70) and 1.64 (95% CI, 1.47-1.80), respectively. The estimated treatment effect was -0.08 (95% CI, -0.31 to 0.14).

Discussion: Compared with usual care, supervised therapy did not improve asthma control among this population of Latino students. Additional research is warranted to confirm these results.

Trial registration: NCT01997463.

Keywords: Schools; anti-inflammatory agent; asthma; child; cluster randomized trial; directly observed therapy; inhaled corticosteroid; medication adherence; randomized controlled trial.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use*
  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Asthma / drug therapy*
  • Asthma / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medication Adherence
  • Mometasone Furoate / therapeutic use*
  • Poverty
  • School Health Services / statistics & numerical data*
  • Schools
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States / epidemiology


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Anti-Asthmatic Agents
  • Mometasone Furoate

Associated data