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Children’s Hospital of Richmond at Virginia Commonwealth University

Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU’s You Can Control Asthma Now (UCAN) community asthma program helps children who live in the Richmond, Virginia, metropolitan area where both asthma and poverty rates are disproportionately high.  Established in 2015, UCAN has served more than 344 patients using a family-focused case-management approach. Families are typically enrolled following an uncontrolled asthma-related emergency room visit or hospitalization, but can also be referred by their primary care physician or self-refer.   UCAN patients are assigned a pulmonologist (lung doctor) who provides comprehensive asthma care, receive asthma education from a nurse, and are provided resources and support to address barriers to treatment following evaluation by a social worker.  They receive follow up communication via text and phone calls, and are referred as needed for a Healthy Homes assessment through the City of Richmond Health District. UCAN also collaborates with the Medical Legal Partnership Program to empower families to address environmental housing issues not properly addressed by landlords. UCAN has saved $691 per patient through decreased hospitalizations and emergency room visits – leading to an overall cost reduction of $163,958. 

Kathleen Bowden, Dr. Michael Schechter, and Ginger Mary of the UCAN Program in the Division of Pediatric Pulmonology at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU.

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