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Canadian Respiratory Journal
Volume 20, Issue 4, Pages 295-300
Original Article

Asthma Education Program for First Nations Children: An exemplar of the Knowledge-to-Action Framework

Maureen L Douglas,1 Shawna L McGhan,1 Danielle Tougas,2 Nancy Fenton,3 Christopher Sarin,4 Oxana Latycheva,5 and A Dean Befus1

1Alberta Asthma Centre, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada
2Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
3School of Public Health and Health Systems, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
4First Nations and Inuit Health, Health Canada, Alberta Branch, Canada
5Asthma Society of Canada, (current affiliation, Ontario Lung Association), Ontario, Canada

Copyright © 2013 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


BACKGROUND: The prevalence of asthma in Aboriginal children is 6% to 14%. Gaps in knowledge regarding asthma and its management exist in First Nations (FN) communities, and culturally relevant education and resources are required. Studies have recommended that the children’s asthma education program, the ‘Roaring Adventures of Puff’, be modified through partnership with FN communities to be culturally appropriate.

OBJECTIVE: To adapt this knowledge tool and design an effective implementation process for FN knowledge users (children with asthma and care providers), guided by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research knowledge translation framework.

METHODS: The problem was identified, knowledge was identified/reviewed/selected (literature review); knowledge was adapted to the local context (FN working and advisory groups); barriers to knowledge use were assessed (by knowledge users); and interventions were selected, tailored and implemented (modified curricula and the creation of a new activity book and web-based resources, and regional coordinators, asthma educator mentors and community teams were recruited).

RESULTS: Major outcomes were the adapted tools and blueprints for tailoring implementation. Additional outcomes were preliminary observations and outputs from the iterative processes, including information about local context and barriers. Specific additions were roles for community members supported by asthma educators (applying FN teaching models and addressing health care demands); relevant triggers (addressing knowledge gaps); and FN images and stories, themes of circle, sacred teachings, nature and family/elders (culture and addressing low reading levels).

CONCLUSION: The framework model provides a logical, valuable tool for adapting a knowledge tool and implementation process to new knowledge users. Future research should measure uptake, effect on health outcomes of FN asthma sufferers and sustainability.