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Breath Takes: Fall/Winter 1998

Fall/Winter, 1998
Vol. 5, No. 1

This is a portion of the American Lung Association of Los Angeles County's 1998 Breath Takes. ?If you would like to receive a complete copy, please call the American Lung Association at
or (800) LUNG-USA.

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"It could have cost him his life," said Patricia Rhinehart. She was talking about her 11-year old son Devin and his asthma, what the doctors didn't tell or couldn't tell her about his disease.

Luckily, the American Lung Association's Open Airways For Schools came to Devin's school, and he enrolled. An asthma management education program for elementary school students, Open Airways teaches children how to take responsibility for their health, and empowers them to learn about their disease. So far, over 120 Los Angeles County schools have benefited from the program. Devin learned how to use a peak flow meter, a device that measures airflow into the lungs, what to do during an emergency, and what could possibly trigger his asthma.

Devin Bastiste breathes easier thanks to Open Airways For Schools

At the last session of Open Airways, parents are invited to watch their children receive their asthma management certificates, and to ask questions and speak to a trained asthma educator. "The one meeting I had at Open Airways, she (the facilitator) cleared up everything," declared Patricia, " She told me signs and stuff the doctors and nurses didn't know. What I learned would have saved me so much worry, so much time."

This fall, for the first time, Devin did not have an asthma attack when he started school. Success stories like Devin's are what Open Airways For Schools is all about, and what the trained volunteer facilitators want to see happen.

Currently, the American Lung Association of Los Angeles County is partnering with American Drug Stores to train Sav-On pharmacists to teach Open Airways in their local schools. At a recent facilitator training session, the dedication and enthusiasm of this group of pharmacists was clear.

"All of us had a lot of fun with it, and because we had a lot of fun I think the kids will, and we'll be able to teach it," said Monica Vera Schubert, a Sav-On pharmacist at a store in Burbank. Why do these volunteers want to teach Open Airways? "To have an impact on our community. We're in a unique position as pharmacists because we're so accessible. We'll do a lot of good," said Felix Golovaty.

Every year, at least one Los Angeles child dies from an asthma attack at school. The volunteer facilitators want to change that, and through Open Airways, they can. Just ask Patricia Rhinehart, Devin's mother: "I think this is something that should be in every school."

For more information on
Open Airways For Schools contact
Johanna Goldberg, at
(323) 935-LUNG, ext. 227

(Updated 12/20/98)

When You Can't Breathe, Nothing Else Matters ?
The mission of the American Lung Association of Los Angeles County
is to prevent and eliminate lung disease
and to improve the quality of life and health of those with lung disease.
Your contributions to Christmas Seals? and Chanukah Seals? help make the difference.

For more information on lung health, programs, and special events,
call ? ? (or ? ; ? ; ?1-800-LUNG-USA), ? or send us email.
? 1999 American Lung Association of Los Angeles County

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