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HUD Reg. VI 13-76
Patricia Campbell/Scott Hudman
(817) 978-5974 / (713) 718-3107
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FOR RELEASE
Friday
August 16, 2013

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN RECEIVES $683,000TO REDUCE HEALTH AND SAFETY HAZARDS IN HOUSING FOR CHILDREN

FORT WORTH - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today awarded the University of Texas at Austin a $683,805 grant to conduct research on environmental factors in the home that cause asthma, with the purpose of protecting children and other vulnerable groups, such as seniors and the disabled.

Nationally, $10.5 million in grants was awarded to academic and non-profit research institutions.

HUD's Healthy Homes Technical Studies (HHTS) Program supports new approaches to improve the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of methods to control housing-related health and safety hazards. The program, part of HUD's Healthy Homes Initiative, is particularly focused on the health of children and other vulnerable groups. The grants announced today supplement the $98 million in grants HUD awarded in May to protect thousands of children from lead and other home hazards.

"These grants will support important research that can help us identify and control those things in our homes that can cause or contribute to injury or illness," said Jon L. Gant, Director of HUD's Office of Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control. "Children and seniors are more easily harmed by residential hazards, which is why it's critical that we develop cost effective methods of protecting them."

The University of Texas at Austin will use its $683,805 Healthy Homes Technical Studies grant to evaluate asthma triggers in HVAC filter dust and asthma severity/quality of life factors for asthmatic children. The study will focus on investigating the home environment of a particularly vulnerable population - rural, low-income school age children diagnosed with asthma in central Texas. To provide a basis for comparison, contaminant levels in homes of children without asthma from the same study population will also be evaluated. Contact: Kerry A. Kinney, Principal Investigator, at (512) 232-1740 or crwr.engr@utexas.edu.

HUD's Healthy Homes Initiative promotes safe, decent, and sanitary housing as a means for preventing disease and injury. There is an emerging body of scientific evidence - to which these new grants will contribute - linking health outcomes such as asthma, lead poisoning, and unintentional injuries to substandard housing.

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