Assessing Indoor Environmental Control Practices by Race/Ethnicity Among Children With Asthma in 14 US States and Puerto Rico, 2013–2014
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Assessing Indoor Environmental Control Practices by Race/Ethnicity Among Children With Asthma in 14 US States and Puerto Rico, 2013–2014

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      In the United States, children in Puerto Rico and non-Hispanic black children in the mainland US have a higher burden of asthma than non-Hispanic white children in the mainland US. We examined indoor environmental control (IEC) practices that reduce asthma triggers, by race/ethnicity among children in the mainland US and Puerto Rico.


      We used 2013 and 2014 data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Asthma Call-back Survey Child Questionnaire from 14 states and Puerto Rico to measure the association between race/ethnicity and IEC practices, adjusting for sociodemographic covariates, among children identified as ever receiving an asthma diagnosis. Racial/ethnic groups were compared in 14 US states using aggregated data. Separate analyses compared IEC practices for children diagnosed with asthma in Puerto Rico with children of all races/ethnicities diagnosed with asthma in 14 states.


      Among households in 14 US states that had a child with asthma, non-Hispanic black children were more likely than non-Hispanic white children to use an air purifier (36.8% vs 25.2%; adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 2.0; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.3–3.2) and avoid pets in the bedroom (87.9% vs 58.3%; aOR = 4.5; 95% CI, 2.3–8.8). Children in Puerto Rico were more likely than children in 14 states to use dust mite–impermeable pillow covers (53.7% vs 36.4%; aOR = 3.6; 95% CI, 1.8–7.1) and mattress encasements (60.3% vs 30.3%; aOR = 2.4; 95% CI, 1.2–4.8).


      IEC practices such as using air purifiers, pillow covers, mattress encasements, and avoiding pets in the bedroom vary by race/ethnicity among children with asthma. These findings show that vulnerable populations are using IEC practices, but asthma prevention and control measures should continue to be assessed.

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