Tuesday, September 23, 2014

GRU offers free summer camp for children with asthma

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Georgia Regents University is sponsoring the third annual Augusta Area Asthma Day Camp for children with asthma July 21-25 at Camp Tanglewood Girl Scout Camp in Columbia County.

asthmacampThe free camp offers kids ages 6-13 a safe environment to participate in normal summer camp activities and an opportunity to learn more about their condition. Daily activities include swimming, hiking, games, sports, arts and crafts, and one hour of asthma education. Lunch and snacks are provided. Transportation from the GRU campus and south Richmond County will be provided on a space-available basis. A parent or guardian must attend a brief orientation and education session.

“It’s a great way for kids with asthma to relax and just enjoy being a kid,” said Kitty Hernlen, Associate Professor of Respiratory Therapy, who researches asthma management and education. “They have so much fun, and so do we.”

Volunteer camp counselors include GRU respiratory therapy students, College of Allied Health Sciences faculty members, Richmond County school nurses, private physicians, and Georgia Regents Medical Center respiratory therapists. Volunteers from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Asthma Management Program and the CSRA Asthma Awareness Coalition also participate. The camp is funded by a grant from the W.G. Raoul Foundation and co-sponsored by the CSRA Community Foundation.

Even though nearly 300,000 children in the United States have asthma, the condition is often undiagnosed. It is the leading cause of school absences for children with chronic diseases. If symptoms are uncontrolled, children may lose sleep, avoid physical activity, sidestep medication and feel embarrassed, frustrated or isolated.

For more information, contact Hernlen at 706-721-3554 or khernlen@gru.edu.

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