The Preventive Care Program for Urban Children with Asthma
The Preventive Care Program for Urban Children with Asthma team has the fortunate opportunity to work closely with the Rochester community while emphasizing the importance of continued learning. The following quotes are reflections on how our experiences have affected us.
"In my view, our greatest privilege has been the opportunity to develop the relationships that we have with the community. In particular, the city school district and the nurses have been so supportive of our programs, and have worked diligently to improve care for children with asthma." – Jill Halterman
Maria Fagnano, M.P.H.
Associate Director of Clinical Research
Senior Health Project Coordinator
"I feel very fortunate to work with a wonderful research team that cares about children’s health with great enthusiasm. Our research team always seeks to better understand the families that we work with to ultimately provide better health care to these children." – Maria Fagnano
Bryan Clutz, M.S.
Health Project Coordinator
"Seeing how empirical research personally affects the lives of people involved in studies can sometimes be difficult to perceive, or even lost entirely. One of the best parts of my job and the projects we work on is being able to interact with the children we follow when I visit their schools. Noticing their progress and listening to their questions shows that not only are they learning about their health, they are also taking a proactive role in regulating it. What more would a researcher or clinician want?!" – Bryan Clutz
Paul Tremblay, R.N.
"To be in a position to contribute as a nurse within this dynamic research team is both meaningful and rewarding. Our work together leads to a better understanding of significant gaps and disparities in the asthma care of urban underserved children. Thanks to visionary leadership we are in a unique position to test community-based interventions that address children’s relievable suffering and improve quality of life for Rochester families. Many memorable experiences with bright-eyed children, concerned parents, committed school nurses and local pediatric providers have left their impressions. One former elementary school child was particularly enthusiastic. Through meetings with his mom and dad, I heard about their struggles with long-standing smoking habits. He was able to breathe noticeably better when he received his preventive asthma medicine through school and his parents wanted to take steps to eliminate smoke exposure at home. At the end of the school year we asked this child if he would pose for a picture; he could not contain his excitement and performed cart wheels for us on his front lawn. His mother smiled big too, sharing his joy and looking very proud. The upside down image of this excited boy later became part of the logo we designed for our School-Based Preventive Asthma Care Technology (SB-PACT) study. We’re able to make a difference for real people and learn what it takes to make asthma a chronic condition that children can live well and lead full lives with." – Paul Tremblay
Susan Blaakman, Ph.D.
"I have learned a great deal about what it takes to run a major research project while upholding the highest respect both for science and the care of the families who participate. It was my greatest honor to be invited to a home by a family participating in the NICU study pilot and to be introduced to a now healthy and thriving baby who was at birth ‘the smallest baby ever born at Strong Memorial Hospital.’ I’ll never forget being able to hold a miracle (dressed in pink) in my arms that day!" – Susan Blaakman
Reynaldo Tajon, B.A.
Health Project Coordinator
"One of the most significant learning experiences I’ve had is the knowledge I’ve acquired by working with the community. There have been a few instances when I have encountered health professionals in the hospital or in schools who say they don’t understand why parents don’t give their children medicines or why new parents don’t visit their newborn in the NICU more often. After going out to these parents’ homes and talking with them, it really brings to light issues they’re facing on a day to day basis. Not many health professionals can say they’ve had similar learning experiences." – Reynaldo Tajon
Porschea Lewis, B.A.
"The shared notion that our collective efforts have a direct and lasting impact on the parents, providers, and most importantly the children involved is a grand aspect of this team. I have gained a lot through my experiences as a team member and feel fortunate to have done so." – Porschea Lewis
Elise Wiesenthal, B.A.
"Working with the asthma study team has given me so many opportunities to grow, both professionally and personally. I have had the chance to work with and learn from an amazing group of dedicated, compassionate individuals. I have gained an understanding of the effort that goes into each large scale project, and I am really enjoying the opportunity to become involved in many different aspects of research. Additionally, the interactions we have with families in our programs allow us to shape our studies to the needs of the community. It is so rewarding to be welcomed into the home of a subject, and see the positive effects of our asthma research on a child's life." – Elise Wiesenthal
Courtney Carlin, B.A.
"For me, the best part about being part of the team is the incredible group of people who make these studies a reality. I am constantly impressed by the dedication and drive that everyone shows in achieving the team’s goals. I am proud to work with such an amazing group of people." – Courtney Carlin
Undergrad Research Assistant
"The research we are doing in Rochester proves that the prevention and improvement of health disparities requires the involvement of many dimensions form environmental and physical health to community support. The asthma study team has helped guide me in applying all parts of my undergraduate studies: public health, pre-med, and Spanish into improving the health of children!" – Natalie Molta
Saunders Research Building
601 Elmwood Avenue
Rochester, NY 14642
Phone: (585) 275-5798
Fax: (585) 276-2206
Asthma Study Team