Breaking the Cycle of Disadvantage and Disability for Low-income and Minority Children with Asthma: Pragmatic Solutions for Easier Breathing
Authors: Brian Basinger
Abstract: The focus of this paper is to demonstrate how the legal community can comprehensively address and improve the health of low-income and minority children suffering from asthma. This paper explains the causes and effects of asthma, with particular emphasis on low-income and minority communities, where the impact is greatest. Research shows that black children in America are dying of asthma at a rate six times greater than white children. Further, studies show that asthma rates are significantly higher among families earning $20,000 or less annually. The paper goes on to show that attorneys, lawmakers, and other policy-makers possess a variety of possible legislative, budgetary, and pro bono tools which they can employ to reduce the exposure of children to asthma triggers, thereby reducing asthma attacks and the need for medical treatment. Anecdotal studies already show such legal intervention works at reducing exposure to known triggers, such as dust. Further, the paper shows how numerous government leaders at the state and federal levels are already beginning to blaze new trails in the management of asthma among children The paper concludes that compliance and adoption of the legal solutions discussed herein will lead to better health for asthmatic children, most notably by working to control asthma trigger exposure on a daily basis, instead of treating a child only upon a severe asthma attack.