How does home heating affect school attendance in asthmatics?

January 01, 0001

How does home heating affect school attendance in asthmatics?

Low indoor temperatures has been linked with adverse health outcomes, which can in turn impact on school absence rates. These New Zealand researchers performed this study to determine whether more effective home heating affects school absence for children with asthma. They performed a single-blinded randomized controlled trial looking at a heating intervention in 409 households containing an asthmatic child aged 6-12 years with substandard heating. The intervention was the installation of a more effective heater of at least 6 kW.

The researchers report: "Complete absence data were obtained for 269 out of 409 children. Compared with the control group, children in households receiving the intervention experienced on average 21% fewer days of absence after allowing for the effects of other factors."

The researchers concluded: "More effective, non-indoor polluting heating reduces school absence for asthmatic children."

This study highlights the impact of home heating systems on asthmatic children.

For the full abstract, click here.

Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health 64(5):379-386, May 2010
© 2010 by the BMJ Publishing Group Ltd.
More effective home heating reduces school absences for children with asthma. S Free, P Howden-Chapman, N Pierse, H Viggers, the Housing, Heating and Health Study Research Team. Correspondence to Philippa Howden-Chapman: [email protected]

Category: R. Respiratory. Keywords: asthma, school attendance, school absence, home heating, indoor temperature, randomized controlled trial, journal watch.
Synopsis edited by Dr Paul Schaefer, Toledo, Ohio. Posted on Global Family Doctor 28 May 2010

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