Pediatric Asthma Program

The Chelsea Pediatric Asthma Program improves the management of asthma for adolescent and pediatric patients, resulting in reduced emergency room visits and hospitalizations, and improved children’s health.


In Massachusetts, more than 82,000 children from kindergarten to 8th grade are affected by asthma - a higher prevalence of asthma than in most states in the U.S. Unmanaged asthma impacts children’s daily lives, limiting their physical activity and play time and impacting their school attendance.

The MGH Chelsea Pediatric Asthma Program links pediatric patients with asthma to a Pediatric Asthma Program Coordinator, with the goal of improving asthma management. The coordinator facilitates communication and follow-up between the provider, the patient, and his or her parents/guardians to improve asthma knowledge and asthma care, and to develop an action plan to which the patient can adhere.

About this Program

Following provider visits, the coordinator reinforces the patient’s understanding of asthma and asthma care by reviewing information about disease triggers, symptoms, and medications.  The coordinator, the patient, and his/her caregiver(s) also discuss individualized action plans.  Together, they identify barriers to follow-through and strategies to overcome challenges such as responding to early triggers, removing allergens in the environment, and maintaining a disciplined controller medication regime. 

Patients are referred to colleagues within the health center and partners in community agencies who provide additional assistance with food resources, housing, domestic violence, and other family needs. When appropriate, the coordinator conducts home visits to reinforce asthma teaching and to identify potential environmental hazards in the home.

During FY 2011. a total of 126 patents were served, with 102 patients receiving patient education regarding ashtma triggers, symptoms, medications and more.

Several efforts were made to help improve the flow of asthmatic patients through the clinic. Patients with severe asthma were recruited to participate in Tune Up Clinics. Patients met with the doctor and participated in a group or individual educational session. 122 providers participated and served 27 patients.

Flu clinics were held bi-weekly from October 2010 through January 2011. The percent of asthma patients who received flu vaccine for the 2010-2011 season was 88%, up from 78% for the 2009-2010 season.

14 home visits were conducted. Visits included a review of medications, education about asthma triggers, and environmental assessments of home triggers.  The most common triggers identified were dust mites and household pests.  Each family developed cleaning strategies and identified ways to reduce trigger exposure in the home.


  • What's the link between asthma and the flu? - 12/3/2018, Mass General

    Rose D’Orazio, MGH Revere HealthCare Center nurse manager, shares tips on how parents can protect themselves and their children with asthma during this year's flu season.

  • What to expect during a pulmonary function test in the pediatrician's office - 5/29/2018, Mass General

    A pulmonary function test (PFT) helps clinicians determine the level of inflammation in the airways and are used to check the status of a patient’s asthma. Here, Erik Hinderlie, a pediatric asthma program coordinator at MGH Chelsea, and Elizabete Gomes share what patients should expect during a PFT in their pediatrician’s office.

  • E-cigarette Use and Asthma - What are the health impacts? - 5/4/2018, Mass General

    Jonathan Winickoff, MD, MPH, a primary care physician and tobacco researcher at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, shares insight into the dangers of e-cigarettes, especially for children and young adults with asthma.

  • Pediatric Asthma Q&A with Erik Hinderlie, Pediatric Asthma Coordinator - 5/23/2016, Mass General

    Pediatric Asthma Coordinator Erik Hinderlie answers questions about the condition that affects 6.3 million children in the US.

  • Providing patient education during Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month - 5/3/2016, Mass General

    At least 7 million children experience shortness of breath, wheezing recurring cough caused by asthma. This May, the MGH marks Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month to educate parents about how to better manage their child’s asthma and allergies.

  • MGHfC launches new clinics and program - 11/9/2012, Mass General

    MassGeneral Hospital for Children(MGHFC) recently rolled out two new clinics – the Angelman Syndrome Clinic and the Child and Adolescent Medical Psychiatry (ChAMP) Clinic – and a new weight and asthma program, Inspired Health.

  • Shedding light on harmful effects of tobacco smoke - 12/17/2010, Mass General

    MGH Hotline 12.17.10 MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC) pediatrician-researcher Jonathan Winickoff, MD, MPH, FAAP, has been a vocal advocate of the health and protection of children from the harmful effects of tobacco smoke.


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Luz Betancourt

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