When 3-month-old Kailia Hill’s asthma spiraled out of control and landed her in the hospital several times, her mother, Dominique Hill, knew where to turn. As a child, Hill had severe asthma herself. She attended Morgridge Academy, a free school on the National Jewish Health main campus for children with chronic diseases. At Morgridge, educators and health care staff helped Hill get her own asthma under control.
Morgridge Academy graduate Dominique Hill sought help for her daughter Kailia, pictured, from the same place that helped her as a child, National Jewish Health for Kids.
“Asthma runs through my family,” Hill said. “My sister has it. My mother has it. I lost a best friend to it. And now my daughter has it, and I’m scared I might lose her one day.”
Like many mothers of children with asthma, Hill spends every day worried about Kailia’s health. “It’s just a really scary feeling with a 15-month-old,” Hill said. “I’m scared to wake up to my child not waking up in the morning. She’s only a baby.”
When Kailia came to National Jewish Health for Kids, she saw pediatrician Ronina Covar, MD, and the entire team in the Pediatric Severe Asthma Clinic. The clinic features a multidisciplinary team of nationally recognized physicians with expertise in asthma, pulmonology, behavioral health and drug pharmacokinetics — plus knowledge about the latest asthma research and patient education protocols — to help severe asthmatics gain control over their condition.
The team taught Hill how to manage medications, better monitor Kailia’s lung function and respond appropriately to worsening health. They also suggested changes in the home environment. Thanks to these multiple interventions, Kailia’s asthma has improved significantly. As a result, Kailia has been able to attend day care, allowing her mother to return to work.
With National Jewish Health, Hill has a new outlook for Kailia. “I’m hoping that she’s able to grow up and play like the other kids.