King County Healthy Homes Demonstration Project

Project Funder: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) 

Project Partners: King County Housing Authority (KCHA) and Public Health – Seattle & King County

Project Contact: Jill Breysse, jbreysse@nchh.org, 443.539.4155

Project Description:

The National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) provided evaluation and data analysis, partner training, and quality assurance for this study initiated by the King County Housing Authority (KCHA). The primary goals of this project were to:

  • Reduce asthma triggers and weatherize the homes of approximately 60 low-income households within the Highline School District area; an ethnically diverse, primarily low-income area in southwest King County, Washington; and
  • Determine the impact of these measures on child asthma outcomes.

Partnerships among six organizations allowed researchers to provide family educational interventions in addition to weatherization and healthy homes structural interventions.

The project reduced household health hazards in the homes of families who had children with moderate to severe asthma by providing those families with both public health educational services designed to improve their quality of life, as well as structural remediation services designed to weatherize homes and reduce asthma triggers and household safety hazards.

The study incorporated two innovative strategies by:

  • Using schools and Head Start centers as initial points of contact for locating families to be served, and
  • Adding actual physical remediation to the homes of children with asthma to test the effectiveness of weatherization combined with healthy homes interventions.

At the conclusion of the study, NCHH conducted two major evaluations:

  1. An evaluation of the health impacts of weatherization and healthy homes interventions plus health education versus health education alone through a comparison of the current study’s asthma outcome data with data collected by Public Health – Seattle & King County during a previous study on the impact of health education alone on asthma outcomes; and
  2. A comparison of the health of the enrolled children with asthma before weatherization/healthy homes and education services were provided with the health of the same children approximately one year after the family received weatherization/healthy homes interventions and health education.


Project Results:  
The project showed that combining weatherization and healthy home interventions with in-home education from community health workers significantly improved childhood asthma control.

Resources:

Increasing Community Health Worker Impact by Partnering with Weatherization/Healthy Homes (Webinar; September 17, 2014) http://www.asthmacommunitynetwork.org/CHWs_Weatherization_HealthyHomes

Effect of Weatherization Combined with Community Health Worker In-Home Education on Asthma Control (American Journal of Public Health Abstract; January 2014) http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/abs/10.2105/AJPH.2013.301402

New Evidence Supports Innovative Approach to Reduce Asthma in Poor Children (NCHH Press Release; January 31, 2014) http://www.nchh.org/tabid/139/default.aspx?ContentID=198