Document Type

Capstone Experience

Graduation Date


Degree Name

Master of Public Health


Environmental, Agricultural & Occupational Health

First Committee Member

Dr. Chandran Achutan

Second Committee Member

Dr. Christopher Wichman

Third Committee Member

Ms. Nicole Caputo-Rennels


Children’s exposure to particulate matter (PM) is of great interest because it can cause adverse health effects, including asthma, and decreased lung function. The purpose of this study was to determine the levels of PM in low socio-economic status homes in Omaha, Nebraska. Between October 2018 and September 2019, we collected ambient air PM samples from 30 homes, of which 70% had at least one asthmatic child. Samples were collected at 2 feet and 4 feet to represent the breathing zones of toddlers and older children, respectively. We also asked the study participants questions related to indoor air quality (IAQ). Indoor PM levels ranged from 4.28 to 72.81 μg/m3. There was a significant association between IAQ and the furnace filter status (dirty or clean) (p = 0.023, OR = 7.5 [95% confidence interval: 1.40, 39.84]). We found that IAQ status suggests a significant association with the level of housekeeping (p = 0.05, OR = 4.76 [95% confidence interval: 0.95, 23.86]). Indoor PM levels varied significantly between 2 feet and 4 feet (p < 0.05). PM levels could differ substantially depending on the furnace filter’s status. In addition, exposure to PM can significantly depend on the child’s height.

Included in

Public Health Commons