195713 Environmental education for community health workers (CHWs) and promotoras

Monday, November 9, 2009: 12:30 PM

Nancy Manning Crider, MS, RN, NEA-BC , School of Public Health, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX
Susan Aceti , National Center for Healthy Housing, Columbia, MD
Rosalia Guerrero-Luera , Bureau of Community & Children's Environmental Health, City of Houston Department of Health & Human Services, Houston, TX
Brenda Reyes, MD, MPH , Bureau of Community & Children's Environmental Health, City of Houston Department of Health & Human Services, Houston, TX
Texas is the first state in the country to implement a standardized training and certification program for Community Health Workers (CHWs) and promotoras, and as such is setting the pace for other states. It is anticipated that the targeted environmental education program for CHWs and promotoras will serve as a model for other communities and organizations and be readily replicated across Texas and nationally. By working hand in hand with the communities they serve, CHWS/promotoras empower residents to help themselves. The purpose of the environmental education program is to develop, demonstrate and promote cost effective, preventive measures to correct multiple health and safety hazards in the home environment that produce serious illness and injuries in children in the low and very low income families. Utilizing a holistic approach to improve indoor air quality (IAQ), foster lead safe practices and implement integrated pest management (IPM) controls in the home it is anticipated that there will be a decrease incidence of asthmatic episodes requiring hospitalization, childhood lead poisoning and acute pesticide poisoning. The training program, partially supported by an EPA Region 6 Training Grant, focuses on the goal of improving population health by addressing housing conditions that threaten the health and well being of children and families. The course is available in both English and Spanish, includes the Seven Principles of Healthy Housing and provides CHWs an opportunity to practice their teaching skills. Ultimately, this targeted environmental education will improve environmental literacy, foster environmental stewardship and improve population health outcomes.

Learning Objectives:
1. Will be able to discuss the connection between housing and health. 2. Will be able to describe a bilingual continuing education program designed for CHWs to identify environmental hazards and recommend cost effective healthy home approaches to families, landlords and other community members. 3. Will be able to identify the seven principles of healthy housing and why each is important.

Keywords: Environmental Health Hazards, Housing

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Ms. Crider is an experienced healthcare administrator. She holds a BS and MS in nursing and a Diploma in Accounting and Finance. She has practiced in numerous leadership positions in hospitals, ambulatory care and community health services. Ms. Crider has served as nursing faculty to both undergraduate and graduate nurses. In her current position as Program Manager of the Texas Pubic Health Training Center she works closely with the City of Houston Bureau of Community and Children’s Environmental Health and serves as a training partner for the National Center for Healthy Housing. She also coordinates the monthly Public Health Grand rounds with the Texas Association of Local Health Officials, the Houston Department of Health and Human Services and other health departments across the state. Ms. Crider is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Texas School of Public Health and is working on decreasing the incidence of illness and injuries to children and families by utilizing a holistic, low cost evidence based approach to improving housing conditions known to cause and exacerbate asthma, allergies and other chronic diseases. She is also working with local public housing officials to implement Integrated Pest Management in multi family housing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.