Mar 03

Today is the First Annual World Birth Defects Day

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.


WBDD_ribbon.jpg March 3 is the first annual World Birth Defects Day.

 Created by a network of 12 global health organizations, World Birth Defects Day will help raise awareness about  birth defects prevention and care as well as improve the care of affected children.

Mar 01

Medicaid Matters for Kids Month -- Lily's Story

Throughout the month of March, Speak Now for Kids is celebrating Medicaid Matters for Kids Month with posts highlighting the importance of Medicaid in children’s access to health care.

Today’s post was written by Lily’s mother, Chrissie. Lily has STAR Syndrome. A very rare condition, she was the ninth person in the world to be diagnosed with STAR Syndrome. This rare X-linked syndrome is characterized by syndactyly, a condition where two or more hand or foot digits are fused together; telecanthus; an increased distance between the medial canthi of the eyes; anal or genital malformations; and renal issues.

LilyBlackburn.JPGOver the last year we have started to see a slight decline in her kidney function. However, I am happy to say that Lily is doing well at school, enjoying swimming therapy, and reading lots of books! She is still and will always be fighter, not a day goes by that I do not tell her how proud I am of her.

Feb 20

Congressional Briefing on Kids' Health Coverage

On Friday, Feb. 20, the Children's Hospitals Association and allied organizations in collaboration with the Congressional Children's Health Care Caucus hosted a briefing attended by more than 50 congressional staff entitled, "Medicaid & CHIP 101." This briefing is the first in a three-part Kids' Coverage briefing series planned for 2015. Panelists included:

• Amy B. Mansue, President and CEO, Children's Specialized Hospital, New Jersey
• Cynthia Pellegrini, Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Government Affairs, March of Dimes
• Elisabeth Wright Burak, Senior Program Director, Georgetown University Center for Children and Families (CCF)
• Dr. Marsha Raulerson, Chair, American Academy of Pediatrics' Committee on Federal Government Affairs

 If you were unable to follow Speak Now for Kids' live tweeting of the briefing, just click below to get a first-person look at the informative event.

Feb 18

The Mouth Matters!

By Patrice Pascual

WhiteBoy_in_Operatory_Wide.jpg“Families are surprised to learn that tooth decay is the most common chronic disease of childhood, and that it’s preventable,” says pediatrician Rani Gereige, MD, MPH, FAAP, director of medical education at Miami Children’s Hospital. “They may have difficulty accessing a dentist. So I teach our residents to examine a child’s mouth. Without that, we can’t know if a child is fully healthy.”

Feb 16

"Little Darth Vader" Strikes Back Against CHD

I'm Max Page, also known as "Little Darth Vader" from a 2011 Super Bowl commercial, and a proud supporter of Speak Now for Kids. I'm also a congenital heart patient who receives care at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. I'm grateful for my current health and advocate on behalf of kids like me with congenital heart disease (CHD).

Feb 11

It's American Heart Month -- A Look at Congenital Heart Defect (CHD)

Each year in the United States, about 40,000 (1 in 110) babies are diagnosed with a congenital heart defect (CHD), making it the most common birth defect in the nation. Nearly 25 percent of those families also learn that their child needs heart surgery or another heart procedure to survive—some needing multiple surgeries or even a heart transplant. Kids with CHD are not only affected at birth, but have a lifelong chronic disease requiring specialized care.

Feb 02

ACE Kids Act Will Help Kids Like Osvaldo

Sanchez_Osvaldo_HSC1.jpgIn Manassas, Virginia, Osvaldo Sanchez is a nine year-old who lives with a severe form of cerebral palsy. His pediatric specialist practices medicine in another state. Under this scenario, Medicaid may not cover all of Osvaldo’s care at that location, which forces his parents to a make difficult choice on whether or how to pay for his health needs. But if Congress enacts legislation introduced this week, Osvaldo’s parents --and millions of others across the country-- may get more flexibility in pursuing necessary care for their children.

Jan 27

This Week’s #WellnessWednesday Tackles Antibiotic Use


Join MomsRising at 2 p.m. ET on Wed., Jan. 28 as the Children’s Hospital Association and Sharing Antimicrobial Reports for Pediatric Stewardship (SHARPS) discuss when it is appropriate to have an antibiotic prescribed to a child – if ever – during flu and cold season; antibiotic resistance bugs; the development of new antibiotics and what it means for patients and antibiotic usage in farming.

Jan 26

Help Teens Shatter Myths About Drugs and Drug Abuse








Many teens are not aware of the serious risks drugs and alcohol pose to their health, success in school and future. What can communities do to effectively educate teens about the risks of drug abuse? One way is for school staff, parents, and students to work together to get the truth out.

During this year’s 5th annual National Drug Facts Week (NDFW) to be held January 26, February 1, 2015 The National Institute on Drug Abuse has created an opportunity to arm communities with the materials and tools they need to counteract the myths about drug abuse. Science teachers, health teachers, guidance counselors, social workers, drug prevention programs, and community support programs will use science-based information, available free from NIDA, in their curriculum, school assemblies, PTA meetings, and evening workshops.

Jan 07

January 5-11 is Folic Acid Awareness Week



 You never know what 2015 will bring. Will this be the year you have a baby? Because about 50 percent of all pregnancies are unplanned, whether or not you’re planning to have a baby, you can take steps that will keep you healthy and give your possible baby a healthy start in life. 

January 5-11 is Folic Acid Awareness Week and a great time to start taking a multivitamin with 400 mcg of the B- vitamin folic acid every day. Starting before pregnancy begins is an important way to reduce the risk of birth defects of the brain or spine called neural tube defects (NTD) by up to 70 percent. NTDs occur in the first weeks of fetal development, often before a woman even knows she is pregnant. The most common NTDs are Spina Bifida and anencephaly.

What is folic acid and why do you need it?

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