The Community Asthma Prevention Program Celebrates 20 Years at CHOP

Published on in CHOP News

Members of Community Asthma Prevention Program with Madeline Bell The Community Asthma Prevention Program (CAPP) is celebrating its 20th anniversary at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). CAPP offers free asthma education classes to families in schools, churches and community centers throughout Philadelphia, and provides home visits to families in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties.

“I’m extremely proud of the impact our team has made on the Philadelphia area over the past two decades,” says Tyra Bryant-Stephens, MD, Medical Director of CAPP at CHOP. “Our community health workers really take the time to get to know these families and understand what their struggles are and how they can address those issues.”

CAPP started in 1997 when Dr. Bryant-Stephens and her colleagues realized the exorbitant number of patients coming to the Emergency Department for their asthma attacks, despite the care these patients were already receiving. CAPP was then developed as a way to fill this gap in care by promoting asthma self-management. Since then, CAPP has been funded by the Office of Minority Health, the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention and the Merck Childhood Asthma Network. In 2015 Dr. Bryant-Stephens was invited by President Obama to participate in a roundtable discussion on climate change and health because of CAPP’s successes in the community.

Asthma is the most chronic condition among children and adolescents in the United States. Closer to home, 1 out of every 4 children in West Philadelphia suffers from asthma. Many common triggers, such as dust and pollution, are especially prevalent in Philadelphia neighborhoods. Over the past 20 years, CAPP intervention has led to a reduction in Emergency Department visits at CHOP by 30 to 50 percent.

Pictured above from left to right: Wayne Stewart Jr., Yvonne Stewart, Wayne Stewart, Sr. (CAPP family), Tyra Bryant-Stephens, MD, Madeline Bell, Charmane Braxton (CAPP home visitor), Thomas Farley, MD, MPH (Philadelphia Health Commissioner)