Puff City Rural Georgia takes the existing Puff City II intervention and applies it to a youth population in rural Georgia.
Puff City is a successful NHLBI-funded study that targeted three key asthma management issues: 1) smoking; 2) controller medication adherence; and 3) carrying a rescue inhaler.
Given the success of Puff City among mid-western, inner city youth, an important question is whether such a program can be transplanted and effective for youth living in a different environment, the rural south. Rural Georgia youth are at equal or greater risk from asthma symptoms as inner city, Detroit youth.
Aim 1. To evaluate the effectiveness of the Puff City computer based asthma and smoking management tool among African-American youth attending public high schools in two rural counties of Georgia.
Hypothesis 1. After completing four web-based sessions, youth randomized to the Puff City program (intervention) will have significantly less asthma morbidity and a lower rate of cigarette smoking than youth randomized to the control group (similar web-based sessions visiting public web sites with information on improving asthma control). The dependent outcome variables used to evaluate the two groups will be both subjective (self-report) and objective (biological markers: salivary cotinine, exhaled nitric oxide).
Hypothesis 2. The differences observed between the intervention and control groups of youth will be present at short-term assessment: end of treatment [EOT] at nine weeks, and sustained at long-term assessments: six and twelve months after the completion of the web-based sessions.
220 African-American students from two school systems in Burke and Jefferson Counties in rural Georgia, grades 9-11, approximately 14-18 years of age.