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"Pediatric News Updates" are reported from actual news sources,
but do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Families United on the Net, www.thefunplace.com. For the well-being of all children, parents should not try to diagnose their children, but should seek the advice and care of a pediatrician or family physician.
STATE CHILD HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM (SCHIP)
April 1998 - For the first time in nearly a decade, Congress has
expanded health care coverage for children through the new State Child
Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). SCHIP is a $40 billion, 10-year partnership between individual states and the federal government. SCHIP
provides health insurance coverage to children whose family's income is
too high for traditional Medicaid, but whose families don't earn enough to
pay for private insurance. The American Academy of Pediatrics has committed to develop a regularly updated website on SCHIP,
which will include a range of state-specified data reports and other useful
resources. To learn more, read the
Legislative Fact Sheet on SCHIP.
COMMUNITY BREASTFEEDING PROMOTIONS LOWER INFANT ILLNESS RATES
May 1998 - A new study provides the strongest evidence to date suggesting that community-wide increases in breastfeeding are related to declines in certain infant illnesses. The study, published in this month's Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), focused on a community breastfeeding promotion that effectively increased
the number of mothers who breastfed their babies. The study's author states, "Increasing rates of breastfeeding, in particular among high risk groups and in settings with low initial rates of breastfeeding, is an effective means of reducing infant illness at the community level".
YOUNGER ATHLETES REPORT ILLICIT ANABOLIC STEROID USE
May 1998 - Researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Boston University and Children's Hospital in Boston state that student athletes hoping to improve their performance are using anabolic steroids as
early as middle school. A listing of popular sports and recreational activities shows that steroid users reported the sports with the highest percentage of users as gymnastics and weight training, while those with the lowest percentage were soccer and football. Steroid use has been associated with serious side effects including hypertension, liver dysfunction and cancer, clotting abnormalities and psychological effects. Use during childhood poses the additional concern of premature closure of the growth plates, causing stunted growth. Read more about anabolic steriod's serious side effects.
DEATHS FROM FIRE LINKED TO MATERNAL FACTORS
May, 1998 - Based on maternal factors, children who are at markedly increased risk of death from fire can be identified. In 1994, fires accounted for 17.3 percent of all injury deaths in U.S. children
younger than age 5. The study conducted at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn. concluded that the primary risk factors for these children were the age and education of their mothers and the number of children in their homes. Most pronounced of these factors was maternal education: the risk of fire fatality increased 19.4 times for children of mothers with less than a high school education, compared to those whose mothers had a college degree. The study's authors stressed, "There is an urgent need to develop prevention programs that can be shown to reduce fire-related injury in high-risk children".
MANDATORY HIV/AIDS EDUCATION FOR GRADUATION
May 1998 - According to a policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), education
programs about human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) should be mandatory for students to graduate from high school. The May issue of Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, also recommends that college students studying to become teachers should receive HIV/AIDS education. According to recent research, more than 7,600 cases of AIDS in children younger than 13 years old have been diagnosed in the United States since 1982. In addition, more than 2,700 cases have been diagnosed among adolescents and more than 100,000 cases have been diagnosed among adults in their twenties.
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