Evaluating the Impact of Asthma Education in Hospitalized Pediatric Patients: A Pilot Test


Test the effectiveness of a standardized asthma education on patient health and care utilization in hospitalized pediatric patients.

Background and significance

Of the nearly 6 million children who have asthma in the US, 1 in 6 children visits the ED and 1 in 20 is hospitalized annually, leading to high resource use and healthcare costs. Research shows that standardized asthma education can improve patient outcomes long-term, but less is known about the effectiveness of asthma education provided during hospitalization. At our organization, there was no standardized education for asthma despite an existing protocol.

Theoretical/Conceptual framework

This study drew on the PRECEDE‐PROCEED model with a focus on the role of the parent in self‐management of their child.


This descriptive correlational design compared two independent groups pre-post implementation of standardized asthma education at a community-based hospital. Inclusion criteria were parents of children 2-17 years of age with an admission diagnosis of wheezing, asthma or reactive airway disease, speaks English or Spanish, and has telephone access. The intervention included several educational modalities. Data were collected using chart review and surveys completed by parents on admission, discharge, and post-discharge. Measures assessed knowledge and asthma symptoms; the Children’s Asthma Control Test (C-ACT), ACT, Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) and the Largo Asthma Knowledge questionnaire.


Seventy-nine parents (n=44 usual care, n=35 intervention group) participated. There were no statistically significant differences in parental characteristics, length of stay or asthma knowledge. Knowledge scores ranged from 19%-100% correct. Knowledge about asthma triggers increased from 5.2%-15.5% (p<.05) from admission to discharge for 10 of 12 triggers for all parents. At the post-discharge survey, parents in the intervention group reported their children were less likely to experience wheezing, trouble breathing, or have difficulty playing sports, exercising or running (p<.05).


Our findings hold promise for effective asthma education during hospitalization despite a trend for increasingly short lengths of stay. The onset of COVID resulted in a dramatic reduction in hospitalizations and a smaller sample size. Research is needed to examine how to maximize the impact of asthma education during hospitalizations.



Evaluating the Impact of Asthma Education in Hospitalized Pediatric Patients: A Pilot Test