Open Airways for Schools Concept Paper

New York City NY
Due Date : Ongoing

A solicitation will be issued seeking appropriately qualified vendors to coordinate training and provide technical assistance to support the implementation of the Open Airways for Schools (OAS) program in public elementary schools in New York City. OAS is an evidence-based asthma self-management program for children ages 8 to 11. It is designed to educate and empower children through an interactive approach to asthma management. The program teaches children to recognize their asthma symptoms, identify their asthma triggers, and use their knowledge in the management of their illness. By doing so, OAS seeks to improve children’s health and maximize school attendance. Open Airways participants have demonstrated improved asthma management skills, have exhibited fewer asthma symptoms, and have performed better academically in school (Evans D et al, 1987). Since OAS launched in NYC ten years ago, the program has trained approximately 3,119 school nurses and provided self-management education to over 60,000 children with asthma. The program model is school-based, and is comprised of six (6) workshops, each 40 minutes in length, which will be taught by a certified facilitator, typically a school nurse. The workshops engage students through interactive approaches including group discussions, stories, games, role play. This program also seeks to have strong parent involvement. This program aims to achieve the following: • Improve students’ basic understanding of and feelings about asthma. • Enable students with asthma to better recognize and manage their asthma symptoms. • Resolve asthma complications with medicines and assessments of symptoms. • Teach students how to identify and control asthma triggers. • Increase the amount of exercise students with asthma receive. • Improve academic achievement of students with asthma. The program will operate during school hours and will target elementary schools in all five boroughs of New York City. However, there will be a special emphasis on training school nurses who work in schools in the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s District Public Health Office neighborhoods, which include East and Central Harlem, South Bronx and Central Brooklyn. The goal of this solicitation is to train elementary school nurses on the Open Airways For School curriculum, so that they, in turn, can educate and empower children through an interactive approach to asthma self-management. It is anticipated that 130 school nurses would receive training in the OAS curriculum under this initiative.

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