Improving asthma self-efficacy: Developing and testing a pilot community-based asthma intervention for African American adults

Molly A. Martin*, Catherine D. Catrambone, Romina A. Kee, Arthur T. Evans, Lisa K. Sharp, Christopher Lyttle, Cheryl Rucker-Whitaker, Kevin B. Weiss, John Jay Shannon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Background: Low-income African American adults in Chicago have disproportionately high asthma morbidity and mortality rates. Interventions that improve asthma self-efficacy for appropriate self-management behaviors might ultimately improve asthma control in this population. Objective: We sought to pilot test an intervention to improve asthma self-efficacy for appropriate self-management behaviors. Methods: Participants for this trial were recruited through 2 primary care clinics located in the largest African American community in Chicago. Participants were then randomized into one of 2 groups. The control group received mailed asthma education materials. The intervention group was offered 4 group sessions led by a community social worker and 6 home visits by community health workers. Telephone interviews were conducted at baseline (before intervention), 3 months (after intervention), and 6 months (maintenance). Results: The 42 participants were predominantly African American and low income and had poorly controlled persistent asthma. The intervention group had significantly higher asthma self-efficacy at 3 months (P < .001) after the completion of the intervention. Asthma action plans were more common in the intervention group at 3 months (P = .06). At 6 months, the intervention group had improved asthma quality of life (P = .002) and improved coping (P = .01) compared with control subjects. Trends in behavioral and clinical outcomes favored the intervention group but were not statistically significant. Conclusions: This community-based asthma intervention improved asthma self-efficacy, self-perceived coping skills, and asthma quality of life for low-income African American adults. Larger trials are needed to test the efficacy of this intervention to reduce asthma morbidity in similar high-risk populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-159.e3
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009


  • Adult asthma
  • African American
  • asthma self-efficacy
  • behavioral randomized controlled trial
  • community health worker
  • low income

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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