‘Get Asthma Ready’ Day May 24 in Capaha Park

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo.,

May 13, 2008 – Residents from across the region interested in learning more about asthma are invited to “Get Asthma Ready”  May 24 in Capaha Park in Cape Girardeau during Asthma Awareness Month.

The free events, scheduled from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., will offer asthma, blood pressure and body mass index screenings for people of all ages.  In addition, there will be a number of activities for children, including games, face painting, storytelling, chalk drawing and an opportunity to have their picture taken in front of a Cape Girardeau Fire Department fire truck and to visit with local firefighters.

Heather Duschell, research specialist with Southeast Missouri State University’s Center for Environmental Analysis, says the day’s events are designed to “raise awareness about asthma. Education is really the key,” she said. “Getting people to know the signs and the triggers of asthma and knowing about the resources available to get help” is important, she said.

Officials with Southeast Health On Wheels, known as the S.H.O.W. Mobile, Dr. Janna Tuck, a local allergist, and Billy Thatcher, RT, along with other respiratory therapists with Southeast Missouri Hospital will conduct the asthma screenings, while representatives with the Cape Girardeau County Health Center will offer blood pressure and body mass index screenings and provide information on heart disease, strokes and diabetes.

“This is an opportunity for families to come out to Capaha Park on this Memorial Day weekend to have some fun,” Duschell said.

“Get Asthma Ready” is a joint effort of Southeast Missouri State University’s Center for Environmental Analysis, the American Lung Association, Southeast Missouri Hospital, the Cape Girardeau Fire Department, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Cape Girardeau County Public Health Center, St. Francis Medical Center and the NASA Educator Resource Center.

For more information on “Get Asthma Ready,” contact Dr. John Kraemer, director of the Center for Environmental Analysis, or Heather Duschell at (573) 651-2355.