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Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation

Mashantucket Pequot TribalNation

2 Matts Path
Mashantucket, CT 06338

Phone: (860) 312-8020
Fax: (860) 889-7557
Title: Yahshash Program
Project Director: Sandra Berardy
Target Population: American Indian/Alaska Native
Health Issues: Asthma, Cancer
Age Group: Prenatal, Infants, Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly

The Yahshash (Pequot for Breath) Program seeks to reduce the burden of asthma and lung cancer in the New London County American Indian community. The project is a collaborative effort with Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation, Ledge Light Health District, and United Community and Family Services. Specific objectives are to: provide increased patient self-care management and environmental management for asthma; increase knowledge of asthma prevalence and utilization of services; identify effective programmatic and surveillance strategies in the American Indian population; and increase the number of non-smokers in the target population.

The asthma intervention program is a home-based program promoting asthma management and self care approaches through education, skill-building, and interactive interventions on environmental triggers, including environmental tobacco smoke. Participants receive an initial home visit, during which nursing and environmental assessments are completed, and patient education provided regarding triggers, medication, and other asthma management “orders.” Assistance is provided to families in developing an asthma care plan. An assessment summary, with recommendations, is provided to the patient, the primary care provider, and school nurse, as appropriate, to improve coordination of care. Followup home visits are conducted at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months, as needed. The nurse acts as an advocate and health care system navigator to aid participants in accessing healthcare and healthcare facilities. The smoking intervention program is designed specifically to help American Indians/Alaska Natives to stop smoking and remain smoke free. Basic information on smoking and the effects of second hand smoke, practical counseling, problem solving skills training, and social support are provided through six bi-weekly, one- hour group sessions. Alternative pharmacotherapy and American Indian medicines and home remedies are also discussed. Participants are contacted twice weekly for support for 3 months following completion of the sessions, and are encouraged to use the state’s stop smoking hot line. The Yahshash Program will be promoted through brochures, community newspapers, presentations, Tribal Gatherings, powwows, membership meetings, and social events.

Content Last Modified: 1/6/2006 2:38:00 PM
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