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Northern California Breathmobile


Photos: East Bay BMo (left), WCC BMo (right) 

In 2008, the Prescott-Joseph Center founded the first Breathmobile® Program (BMo) in Northern California. The BMo is a sustainable, accessible, community-wide program that provides full service asthma management and education for primarily underserved children and families throughout Alameda, West Contra Costa (WCC), and San Francisco Counties. This program is provided FREE to our patients. in 2018, PJC acquired a 2nd Breathmobile to serve West Contra Costa. 


 The Breathmobile® is a 33-ft. Winnebago RV, outfitted with the latest equipment to function as a mobile asthma clinic.  Inside the van, there are an intake station, a testing area for vital signs, allergen skin testing and an exam room.  On board are two computer systems, a health risk assessment system, a screening module for pre-diabetes, and a state of the art electronic medical records system.  Breathmobile® personnel consists of bilingual Pediatric Asthma Specialists, including a Pediatrician, a Registered Nurse and/or Family Nurse Practitioner, a Respiratory Therapist, and Medical Assistants, all asthma-certified, and a bilingual Patient Service Worker/Driver.  PJC is the only organization managing the Northern California Breathmobile. In order to engage health care providers in the community, the BMo trains graduates of Contra Costa College’s Medical Assistant Program each year. 


As part of a national consortium of national Breathmobile® units, the Northern California Breathmobile® program aims to: 


  1. Reduce asthma-related emergency room (ER) visits;

  2. Reduce asthma-related hospitalizations;

  3. Reduce school absenteeism due to asthma (for children in preschool-aged and K-12); and

  4. Improve asthma management and education for families and children with asthma. 


To measure success, a case management tracking system monitors and collects comprehensive data.  A consortium evaluates outcomes for all Breathmobile® programs.  Process and performance measures are routinely analyzed for evaluation and quality improvement purposes.  The tracking of emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and school absenteeism is supported by the MPI.  The best indicator of success is improved health and well-being of the low-income residents that we serve in Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Francisco Counties.  With routine follow-up visits at schools and child care centers, we measure how effective our program is in helping the participating children and their families effectively manage their asthma.  We also assess how knowledge of asthma and its triggers has increased, due to participation in the program.


From September 2009 to January 2020, we have saved          $17, 370, 613 total health care dollars. 

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"Asthma is one of the top three chronic causes of school absenteeism and the third leading cause of emergency hospitalization among children each year." Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention
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