Study Shows a Third of Childhood Lead Poisoning Goes Undiagnosed

study published today (April 27) in the peer-reviewed journal Pediatrics shows what lead poisoning among U.S. children looks like—and it’s bad.

Roughly a third of children exposed to lead likely go undiagnosed, according to the study. The study looked at 39 states where data is available from 1999 to 2010. Only 607,000 of the 944,000 cases in states that report to the Centers for Disease Control Control and Prevention (CDC) are identified. That means 36 percent of cases go unnoticed.

Lead poisoning is extremely dangerous for children, so much so that the CDC has determined no amount of lead safe is for them. The toxic metal can damage the brain and nervous system, slowing a child’s growth and development, which can lead to learning and behavioral problems.

Add your reaction Share

Medical providers need to take leadership role in U.S. health reform debate

Doctors and nurses regularly rank among the nation’s most respected professions. That’s why they need to become the loudest voices in the room as Republican efforts to replace former President Obama’s Affordable Care Act stagger forward.

In March, the Republican replacement plan — dubbed the American Health Care Act (AHCA) — failed to gather enough support within the GOP-controlled House to merit a floor vote. But discussions are still underway to find a compromise between the House Freedom Caucus, which thought the AHCA was still too generous to those who need help buying coverage, and more moderate Republicans, who thought the bill would throw too many people off insurance rolls.

As negotiations continue after the congressional spring break, updates regrettably lean toward meeting Freedom Caucus demands. A less well-understood proposal from the original plan also remains under consideration: $880 billion worth of cuts to Medicaid over 10 years. Medicaid is the state- and federally-funded safety net program that pays for the bulk of long-term care for the elderly and disabled, as well as medical coverage for the poor.
Add your reaction Share

How Child Care Enriches Mothers, and Especially the Sons They Raise

As many American parents know, hiring care for young children during the workday is punishingly expensive, costing the typical family about a third of its income.

Helping parents pay for that care would be expensive for society, too. Yet recent studies show that of any policy aimed to help struggling families, aid for high-quality care has the biggest economic payoff for parents and their children — and even their grandchildren. It has the biggest positive effect on women’s employment and pay. It’s especially helpful for low-income families, because it can propel generations of children toward increased earnings, better jobs, improved health, more education and decreased criminal activity as adults.

Affordable care for children under 5, long a goal of Democrats, is now being championed by Ivanka Trump.

Add your reaction Share

Eat, Sleep, Repeat: How Kids' Daily Routines Can Help Prevent Obesity

Nagging your kids to stick to a set bedtime each night may feel like a thankless task. But here's some justification that your efforts are setting your kids up for a healthier life: A new study finds that preschool-age children who didn't have a set sleep routine were more likely to be overweight by the time they became tweens.

"We found children who had inconsistent bedtimes were almost twice as likely to be obese by age 11 compared to kids who had regular bedtimes," says study author Sarah Anderson, an epidemiologist at The Ohio State University.

The new study, which is based on findings from a cohort of children in the U.K., builds on a body of research that finds household routines early in life can influence body weight and the risk of obesity in adolescence and beyond. It's published in the International Journal of Obesity.

Add your reaction Share

Changes To Federal Insurance Plans Could Hurt Families Of Chronically Ill Kids

Kids with chronic conditions are especially vulnerable to health insurance changes, relying as they often do on specialists and medications that may not be covered if they switch plans. A recent study finds that these transitions can leave kids and their families financially vulnerable as well.

The research, published in the April issue of Health Affairs, examines the spending impact of shifting chronically ill kids from the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to policies offered on the marketplaces established under the federal health law. The out-of-pocket costs to these children's families would likely rise — in some cases dramatically — following a change to marketplace coverage, the study finds.

Add your reaction Share

Common Nursery Products Send Thousands of Children to Hospitals

Baby carriers, cribs, strollers, high chairs, changing tables, bath seats — these ordinary nursery products result in an average of 66,000 injuries a year requiring trips to the emergency room for young children.

Using data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, researchers estimate that from 1991 to 2011, there were 1,391,844 injuries among children under 3 that were serious enough to be treated in a hospital.

The rate of injuries decreased from 1991 to 2003, mainly because there were fewer baby walker- or jumper-related mishaps. But in 2003, the rate began to rise, and by 2011 the number of injuries had increased by 23.5 percent. Three-fifths of the injuries were caused by falls.

Add your reaction Share

Pay attention to the mental health of children

Did you know that…

…suicide is the third leading cause of death among children ages 10-14?

…19 percent of Hispanic students in grades 9-12 report having seriously considered attempting suicide and 11 percent have made a suicide attempt?

Add your reaction Share

F.D.A. Strengthens Warnings for Painkillers in Children

The Food and Drug Administration announced on Thursday that any child younger than 12 should not take the opioid codeine and that those 18 and younger should not take tramadol, another painkiller, after certain types of surgery. In addition, nursing mothers should avoid both opioids because they pose dangers to breast-feeding babies, the agency said.

Drug manufacturers will be required to update their package inserts to reflect the new contraindications, the strongest kind of warning, to alert doctors and parents that children can have trouble breathing or die after taking these drugs. Some over-the-counter cough or cold remedies contain codeine, so parents should read all labels to avoid accidentally giving it to their child.

Teenagers with certain conditions like severe lung disease, obesity or obstructive sleep apnea that can impair breathing may be at particular risk, the agency cautioned.

Add your reaction Share

Kids in Crisis | 10 ways to help kids' mental health

For two years now, USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin’s Kids in Crisis series has sought to shed light on gaps in youth mental health services and help policymakers identify life-saving solutions.

Our first year of reporting culminated in a list of 10 ideas to improve services, based on guidance from dozens of experts and families across the state, and a rally to present the ideas to policymakers for consideration. Some ideas later gained traction; others appear to have stalled.

State officials, including Gov. Scott Walker, and families from around the state will discuss the ideas May 4 as part of USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin's day of action. The event, 10 a.m. at the Overture Center in Madison, is free and open to the public. Ahead of that discussion, we've looked at the status of each proposal.

Add your reaction Share

Doctors Said This Teen Would Never Run A Marathon. They Were Wrong.

t was April 1997 when doctors told Austin Prario’s parents that their newborn son might not live to see his first birthday.

Nearly 20 years later, the Rhode Island native has not only proven that prediction wrong ― he’s completed the 121st Boston Marathon.

Prario made his way across the finish line of the race on Monday as cheers erupted from the crowd. His doctors believe he may be the first person with his type of heart condition to complete the famously challenging 26.2-mile race, which he finished in just over 6 hours and 14 minutes.

Add your reaction Share

1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    65  66  Next →