Coordinated Healthcare Interventions for Childhood Asthma Gaps in Outcomes (CHICAGO)  


The CHICAGO PLAN was designed to improve the health of children with uncontrolled asthma. It is a research study to compare emergency department and home-based interventions to learn which produces the best outcomes for children. The CHICAGO Plan spans Chicago’s south and west side neighborhoods, which are the hardest hit by asthma.

The Problem

Chicago has among the highest asthma rates in the U.S.

Chicago’s asthma problem is severe. Our hospitalization rates are double the national rate. African American and Latino families living in Chicago’s south and west side neighborhoods bear the brunt of it. The burden falls most heavily on their children.

Download a larger version of Chicago asthma by the numbers.

A Discovery

Today, the places where children get asthma care have weak ties to one another

The CHICAGO Plan learned that there is a disconnect between the asthma care children receive in emergency departments and the care they get in clinics, at school and at home. This causes gaps and fragmentation in treatment. People who care for a child with asthma need a way to coordinate their care with others. They also need to share critical information.

Download a larger version of the CHICAGO Cross Sector Model.

Listen to the story of a community health worker (CHW) who discovers a child having an asthma attack: 10 Roadblocks to Caring for a Child with Asthma in Chicago from Breathe Chicago on Vimeo.

The Intervention

CHICAGO Plan starts in the emergency department

CHICAGO Plan seeks to improve the health outcomes of minority children with asthma who visit the emergency department. It compares three approaches to asthma care to see which is most effective.

Download a larger version of the CHICAGO Interventions.

The Innovation

A new asthma discharge tool built by everyone, for everyone

The CHICAGO Plan worked with communication designers to create a new asthma discharge tool. The designers worked with doctors, patients and caregivers to build a tool that is easy to read and use. It is designed to help everyone who cares for a child with asthma talk to each other about asthma management and asthma medicine. It is designed to work in the ED, at home, at school, and with families and outpatient doctors.

Download the Asthma Discharge Tool here.

The Team

CHICAGO Plan is a unique cooperative

The CHICAGO Plan built an extraordinary new partnership model in asthma care. It included caregivers of children with asthma and their families. It also included community partners, local asthma research experts, six hospital systems, and the Chicago Department of Public Health. Together this new cooperative worked to create a better approach to asthma care for children and reduce the health disparities seen in Chicago.

Everyone counts in CHICAGO. We involved:
• 6 Chicago Emergency Departments: their nurses, doctors and administrators
• Caregivers
• Children
• Local asthma research experts
• Community health workers
• Community advocacy groups
• Doctors who work in outpatient clinics
• … and others

Coming Soon: Findings

Additional information:

To learn more about CHICAGO Plan, contact Amy O-Rourke at [email protected] 
or (312) 628-0235.