Senator Murray Announces $199,969 to Help Children with Asthma

Apr 26 2001

Grant provides primary care services, lifestyle modification programs to rural youth and their families

(WASHINGTON, DC) - Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) announced grants totaling $199,969 to provide health services to children with asthma. The grant, provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will allow the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic and a network of local and community agencies to help asthmatic children in Walla Walla, Yakima, Benton and Columbia counties.

"These funds will help provide much needed health care services for some of Washington state's most vulnerable children," Murray said. "Working families in rural communities face special challenges in obtaining affordable health care and I know these grants will make a difference."

The Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic provides comprehensive medical and social services to underserved communities in rural Washington and Oregon. The Clinic will use the funds to provide primary health care to asthmatic children, help families modify their home environments to reduce allergens, and work with local agencies to provide asthma training sessions to child care providers.

"Receiving this funding is terrific,"said Vickie Ybarra, Director of Planning and Development for the Clinic. "It means that the good work of helping children with asthma can continue and that more patients will have the benefit of treatment. Asthma attacks and trips to the emergency room keep children from fully participating in school and play -- these funds will help to improve their quality of life."

Senator Murray is a champion for funding to combat childhood asthma. This week she cosigned a letter to Arlen Specter, Chairman of the Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations Committee urging the provision of $50 million to fund community-based asthma treatment programs and $5 million in grants to incorporate asthma management programs into state Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Programs. Senator Murray also cosponsored the Children's Asthma Relief Act which Congress passed as a part of a larger Children's Health Act at the end of last year. The Act provides access to care for uninsured children, education programs for parents and medical professionals and home modifications and other services to improve conditions that exacerbate or induce asthma.