The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2009 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

RETENTION OF ASTHMA KNOWLEDGE IN SCHOOL PERSONNEL

Kathleen Hernlen1, Randall Baker1, Pamela Collins2, James Dias1, Allison Vaughn1, Cierra Fortson1, Kristi McMullen1; 1Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, GA; 2American Lung Association, Atlanta, GA

BACKGROUND: Between September 2006 and 2008, six children under 14 years of age residing in the Augusta, Georgia area were reported to have died from asthma. The asthma death rate in Richmond County, including Augusta, was significantly higher than the state and national pediatric asthma death rates during this time. The Richmond County Board of Education requested Georgia’s American Lung Association’s (ALA) Asthma 101 training for school personnel to address the need for education about asthma. The ALA’s Asthma 101 program is a one hour class designed to educate the lay community, including school personnel, about asthma. Many schools have since requested repeat Asthma 101 programs, which prompted the investigators to ask if the Asthma 101 information is retained among teachers and school staff. The retention of knowledge after Asthma 101 training has not been examined. This study evaluated the retention of knowledge presented in the Asthma 101 program 18 months after the program. METHOD: Asthma 101 training was provided for teachers by the same instructor at two schools in the fall of 2007. A post-test to assess knowledge of asthma management was administered at that time. An identical post-test was administered to teachers who participated in the 2007 program in the spring of 2009. Individual and group results from 2007 and 2009 were compared to determine the retention of knowledge. RESULTS: Post tests from 2007 were matched to post tests in 2009. There were 85 participants in the 2007 training from both schools. However only 28 could be matched to post tests in 2009 (33%) There was no significant difference in yearly scores for either school (p= 1.00 and p= 0.718) or when the scores for both schools were combined (p= 0.779). There was no significant difference in school scores for 2007 (p=0.721) or for 2009 (p= 0.569). There was no significant difference in school change scores (p=0.824). Chi square analysis revealed no differences in responses for each individual question from 2007 to 2009 (p values ranging from 1.0 to 0.065). Wilcoxon Signed Ranks test revealed no significant difference in the total number of incorrect responses by year (p=0.903). CONCLUSION: There were no significant differences in the school scores or the individual questions from 2007 to 2009. However, the sample size was small. Further studies with larger numbers of subjects are recommended. Sponsored Research - None

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