During my time in Congress, I have learned that language used in political discussions often becomes riddled with cumbersome numbers. In some cases, the numbers thrown around in a spirited debate can lose their meaning. Some statistics, however, hit particularly close to home. One of them is 400,000 - the 400,000 Texas children who count on the Children's Health Insurance Program.
CHIP impacts every neighborhood in North Texas and around the country. In Dallas County alone, more than 50,000 children are enrolled in CHIP. Denton County has 8,000 children who rely on this vital program. In Tarrant County, that number is 32,000.
Gov. Nathan Deal has proposed $22.9 million dollars in the fiscal year 2019 budget to fund children’s mental health programs.
The funding recommendations come out of a commission the governor created last year to address mental health care access for children. The money would help expand a school-based mental health program, provide more crisis services for children and increase telehealth services.
“Having been a social worker in the state for 20 years, I can tell you this is the first time there’s been a meaningful investment in children’s mental health,” said Judy Fitzgerald, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities
At least one good thing came out of the short-lived government shutdown: The spending agreement approved by Congress Monday (Jan. 22) extends the Children's Health Insurance Program for six years.
CHIP, as it is known, lapsed in September when Congress failed to reauthorize it. States had money to keep the program going temporarily, but they were about to run out.
A recent study found that Louisiana and 10 other states were going to use up their federal funding for CHIP before the end of February. Eleven more were expected to run out of money shortly after that, according to the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute.
Kids who vape and use other forms of e-cigarettes are likely to try more harmful tobacco products like regular cigarettes, but e-cigarettes do hold some promise for helping adults quit.
That's according to the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, which published a comprehensive public health review of more than 800 studies on e-cigarettes on Tuesday.
"There is conclusive evidence that most products emit a variety of potentially toxic substances. However the number and intensity is highly variable," says David Eaton, who heads the committee that wrote the report. He is also the dean and vice provost of the graduate school of the University of Washington, Seattle.
The national Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, will live to see another day, meaning 800 pregnant women and over 75,000 kids in Colorado will keep health coverage.
As The Denver Post reports, CHIP, or as it’s referred to in Colorado, Child Health Plan Plus, provides health coverage to kids and pregnant women from families that make too much to qualify for Medicaid but too little to reasonably afford private coverage.
Here’s the good news: In a new study, the overall rate of children’s eye injuries from sports and recreation decreased slightly from 1990 to 2012. Here’s the bad news: Eye injuries to children from what are called nonpowder guns, including BB guns, pellet guns and paintball guns, increased significantly. And here’s the worse news: Those eye injuries were disproportionately likely to be serious.
The study, published this month in the journal Pediatrics, looked at children under 18 treated in a nationally representative sample of about 100 hospital emergency rooms in the United States. Most were released from the E.R. after treatment, but 4.7 percent were hospitalized with more serious injuries.
Three-fourths of the injured children were boys, and 43 percent of the injuries were in children aged 10 to 14.
One out of two teenagers feels "addicted" to their phone, according to a recent study.
Statistics like this may have fueled two major Apple investors to push the company to offer more flexible parental controls — in fact, Apple has already announced that it's working on new ways to protect kids from smartphone addiction.
But will it be too little too late?