Camp for asthmatic kids marks 28 years

BR IDGEPORT, W.Va. — Camp Catch Your Breath is celebrating 28 years of serving West Virginia communities.

Asthma is a serious disease causing wheezing, difficulty breathing and coughing. The result can be permanent lung damage unless early intervention is sought. It is important to remember:

• 1 in 12 children have asthma

• 1 in 2 children with asthma have one or more attacks

• $1,000 is the average annual medical cost per child with asthma

• 50 percent of children who are prescribed asthma control medicines do not use these medications regularly.

United Hospital Center (UHC) in Bridgeport, West Virginia, and The Health Plan, together with their sponsoring hospital Ohio Valley Medical Center and supporters, have teamed up to provide Camp Catch Your Breath (CCYB) for children with asthma. CCYB offers an opportunity for children ages 8-13 who, as a result of their asthma, would not otherwise be able to participate in a “camp” experience.

Parents are reminded daily of the vital role CCYB plays in the life of their child with severe asthma.

For many of the children who attend, it is often the first time they have been away from home alone, and also their first chance to enjoy activities that are considered ordinary for other children.

This year’s camp will mark 28 years and will be held July 22-27 at WVU Jackson’s Mill in Weston, West Virginia. Campers will participate in typical activities such as arts and crafts, games, swimming and hikes.

However, the special nature of the camp means a focus on education for both the campers and their parents. Parents frequently tell us that the knowledge gained at camp makes a difference in the quality of their children’s lives.

“The most important lesson that the kids can learn at camp is how to self-manage their asthma,” said Sonny Hoskinson, camp director and UHC pharmacist.

“Through this experience they are equipped with the knowledge needed to live the fullest life possible, despite the obstacles of asthma. At the same time CCYB campers will have all the fun of a regular summer camp.”

CCYB will be launching a new registration process in 2018. Parents will be able to complete the registration process completely online using a quick, user friendly website.

In addition to registering your camper, parents will also have the ability to complete a detailed health profile to identify the specific health needs and concerns for each camper.

To register online visit app. or if you should have any questions please contact Sonny Hoskinson, United Hospital Center assistant pharmacy director, Camp Catch Your Breath camp director, at 681-342-1560.