Name, Title and Organization:

Cristine Rameker, MPH; Asthma Program Manager; Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Years in this role:

14 years

I chose to advocate for children’s health because….

Asthma is a chronic disease that disproportionately effects children; however, with proper management, these children can experience a much better quality of life by not missing school and being able to participate in activities of their choice.

Asthma is an important health issue to recognize because

While genetics may influence the development of asthma, it is just one piece of a much larger puzzle. Environmental conditions and social factors play a significant role. Understanding the importance of social and environmental factors can help explain the disparities of health between different populations. Children growing up in disadvantaged neighborhoods suffer the burden of inadequate resources and face greater physical challenges and experience emotional and psychological stressors. Addressing the social determinants of health is a necessity in addressing the inequalities of the burden of asthma.

One thing that is commonly misunderstood about asthma is that….

Asthma medicine only needs to be taken during an asthma attack. There are rescue medications that only need to be taken during an asthma attack; however, controller medications help reduce inflammation in the airway to keep an asthma attack from happening in the first place. Most controller medicines work best if they’re taken every day, even on days without symptoms.

The most rewarding part of my job is…

Having the opportunity to work with so many amazing partners with whom we can collaborate to make a difference in the lives of those impacted by asthma.

One of my favorite memories of working in my current role is…

The dance party held in recognition of the Wisconsin Asthma Coalition’s 10-year anniversary….it was classic!

One of my favorite snack foods is….. “Ants on a Log” (celery, peanut butter, raisins)…. because ….

It is sweet, salty and satisfying and brings me back to my childhood! It also packs a healthy punch with a little bit of peanut butter danger!