The CCHP-CCHC eNews is a monthly newsletter that provides timely information about resources, reports, and research that inform the work of Child Care Health Consultants (CCHCs) working to improve the health and safety of children in early childhood education settings in California. Past issues are available at www.ucsfchildcarehealth.org/ html/healthline/enews.htm.
Here at CCHP we are following the state budget negotiations with regard to health care, as well as child care, that will have huge implications for children in the state, especially those who are low income. Governor Schwarzenegger is proposing the wholesale elimination of some programs, such as the state’s welfare-to work program and state funding for child care assistance, as well as cuts in others such as MediCal and Healthy Families that represent overall a 6.3% reduction in health and human services in the state. The California Child Care Resource and Referral Network has information on how you can help to save child care funding on their website here www.rrnetwork.org/welcome/campaign-to-save-child-care-1.html. At the same time, a recent report finds that in 2009, nearly 1 in 4 Californians under age 65 had no health insurance as unemployment grew from 5.7% two years ago to 12.3% in December, 2009. The good news is that the recent federal health care reform bill passed in Congress represents the biggest expansion of health coverage in 45 years. The bill is complicated and many are confused about what the bill will provide. Here is a summary of what the passage of the health care reform bill will mean for children in California.
Provisions Taking Effect in 2010
Beginning in 2014, individuals and families will be required to have health insurance. Those who are low income but do not qualify for Medicaid will qualify for government credits to help them purchase insurance. Families with incomes at or below 133% of poverty level will be eligible for Medicaid. We encourage you to follow developments in the state and advocate for children. In addition to the state budget negotiations, there are a number of health bills currently in the California State Legislature that are intended to implement and improve certain provisions in the federal health reform law and prepare the state for other provisions contained in the law. The Health Access website is a good source of up-to-date information, www.health-access.org. (For a good summary of the proposed state budget cuts see http://health-access.org/files/preserving/CA%20Budget%20 Seeks%20to%20Limit%20Access%2005-19-10.pdf.)
Almost twice as many pertussis cases have been reported in California in the first quarter of 2010 compared with the same time period last year. Two infants have died.
Recalls have been announced for Children's and Infants' Tylenol, Motrin, Zyrtec, and Benadryl; Graco Harmony High Chair; baby slings and Evenflo Top-of-the Stairs Plus Wood Gates. After multiple recalls, a new ban is expected on drop-side cribs. Recall information is also available on CCHP’s website www.ucsfchildcarehealth.org/html/ healthline/health_safety_alerts.htm
Website Supports Childcare Providers in Implementing Inclusive Practices for Children with Disabilities
The newly updated and expanded Map to Inclusive Child Care website is geared toward providing resources to support childcare providers in implementing inclusive practices for children with disabilities from birth to 21 years of age in their programs. However, the site provides comprehensive resources useful to all families and professionals involved with children with disabilities. Visit the web site at www.cainclusivechildcare.org.
New fact sheets written by Harvard’s National Scientific Council on the Developing Child and an online slideshow describe how stress, poverty and early experiences affect the developing brain.
As part of its Charting Progress for Babies in Child Care project, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) recently has issued a report and presented a webinar that examine how home visiting programs are serving children in family, friend, and neighbor care and family child care. Home visiting programs have been shown to improve outcomes for young children. The federal health care reform bill included $1.5 billion over five years for home visiting programs that provides services such as parent education, health screenings for children and other critical supports for vulnerable families. The policy report presents findings from CLASP's interviews with major national models of home visiting and other stakeholders. The webinar, Extending Home Visiting to Family, Friend, and Neighbor Caregivers and Family Child Care Providers, presented findings from CLASP's interview project with national home visiting models and other stakeholders. Information provided in the webinar included detailed considerations for implementing home visiting with family, friend, and neighbor (FFN) caregivers and family child care (FCC) providers, such as matters of curricula, staffing, and service referral. The webinar also reviewed opportunities that result from serving FFN and FCC, concluding with recommendations for states. A transcript and audio recording of the webinar, as well as slides from the presentation and additional resources, are available at: www.clasp.org/issues/pages?type= child_care_and_early_education&id=0020. The report is available at: www.clasp.org/admin/site/publications/files/ .
The National Environmental Education Foundation’s (NEEF) Children and Nature Initiative (www.neefusa.org/health/children_nature.htm) addresses two important issues—preventing serious health conditions like obesity and diabetes and reconnecting children to nature. A growing body of research indicates that unstructured outdoor activities may improve children’s health by increasing physical activity, reducing stress, and serving as a support mechanism for attention disorders. For more information, please see the Children’s Health and Nature Fact Sheet http://www.neefusa.org/assets/files/NIFactSheet.pdf which highlights key studies from the literature review NEEF conducted. www.neefusa.org/health/children_nature.htm
The Education Law Center recently released two new policy briefs, with support from the Pew Charitable Trusts:
Safe Kids and the MetLife Foundation have partnered to bring you a series of safety videos highlighting how to help prevent injuries to children with physical, developmental or cognitive disabilities. The series profiles three families, all of whom have a child with a different special need. The focus of the videos includes fire and burn prevention, drowning, choking and falls prevention. It will help viewers learn safety guidelines and step-by-step instructions geared towards making safety improvements in the home. www.safekids.org/safety-basics/special-needs/
Audio interviews with developmental pediatricians, neurologist, autism researchers, parents and other advocates answer common questions about autism spectrum disorders. Parents can listen first-hand as experts answer questions about autism spectrum disorders such as:
Listen to Sound Advice on Autism at www.aap.org/audio/autism/.
This new FASDs fact sheet, available from the AAP, contains information about types of FASDs, diagnosis and treatments, Web resources, and information on FASD Regional Training Centers. The fact sheet encourages pediatricians and others to consider FASDs when evaluating children with developmental problems, behavioral concerns or school failure. www.medicalhomeinfo.org/downloads/pdfs/fasdfactsheet.pdf
As part of its Charting Progress for Babies in Child Care project, CLASP recommends that states promote the health and safety of infants and toddlers in child care. New resources on this recommendation are now available. Users can access a wide range of information, including research to "make the case" for promoting infant/toddler health and safety; a research bibliography; policy ideas for states; state examples; and online resources. www.clasp.org/babiesinchildcare/recommendations?id=0008
The SFSP is a 100 percent federally funded program which provides free meals that meet federal nutrition guidelines to all children (0-18) at approved SFSP sites (which must be located in areas with significant concentrations of low-income children) and prevents hunger when schools are out. Child care programs can play an important role in reminding families about Summer Food sites in the neighborhood, and urging them to take advantage of these free meals, especially in these hard economic times. Please download outreach materials, parent flyers and share with families, community organizations and businesses. The Center for Research on Women and Families has joined with organizational leaders from throughout California to form the Summer Meal Program Coalition, a new network devoted to increasing access and utilization of SFSP where it’s needed most. Participate in their free Summer Food webinars. www.ccrwf.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/sfsp-packet-ff.pdf
The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has adopted a high-priority goal to advance the quality of early and school-age care and education programs. The ACF is working to support States, communities, programs, teachers, and staff in moving up the pathways to excellence. A key part of this effort in the coming years will be to work with States and other partners to expand the number of States with effective, well-implemented quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS). The ACF announces the release of the following new resources and tools to support QRIS development.
An intentionally unvaccinated 7-year-old boy who was unknowingly infected with measles returned from Switzerland to his home in Southern California, resulting in the exposure of 839 people, 11 additional cases (all in unvaccinated children), and the hospitalization of an infant too young to be vaccinated. This constituted the largest outbreak of measles in San Diego, California, since 1991. The study is a reminder to parents that opting not to vaccinate a child can put entire communities at risk, including infants who are too young to vaccinate.
Nurse visitation programs for at risk children show benefits, even 12 years later, both to the children who have less substance abuse, less internalizing of problems such as anxiety and depression, and better school performance, as well as to their mothers, who also report less involvement with substance abuse and longer relationships with their partners. Olds DL, Kitzman HJ, Cole RE, et al. (2010) Enduring effects of prenatal and infancy home visiting by nurses on maternal life course and government spending: follow-up of a randomized trial among children at age 12 years. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med.;164(5):419-424.
In this study, children ate twice as much fruit when it was presented in a visually appealing way. Jansen, E., Mulkens, S., & Jansen, A. (2010) How to promote fruit consumption in children. Visual appeal versus restriction. Appetite., epub ahead of print.
CDC researchers found that babies who are breast-fed in early infancy can better self-regulate their milk intake in late infancy compared with babies who were bottle-fed, which could explain previous research linking breast-feeding to lower obesity rates. The study supports the importance of learning to recognize an infant's cues signaling fullness and to respect those cues.
This study finds that even minor forms of corporal punishment (CP), such as spanking, increase the risk for increased child aggressive behavior. Importantly, these findings cannot be attributed to possible confounding effects of other maternal parenting risk factors. This study adds to the growing body of literature suggesting that parental use of CP may lead to increased child aggression. This evidence base suggests that primary prevention of violence can start with efforts to prevent the use of CP against children.
Most preventable adverse drug events in pediatric outpatients are attributable to errors in medication administration. Dosing devices are not “health literate” because of their high degree of variability and complexity. In this study, dosing errors by parents were significantly more frequent with cups compared with droppers, spoons, or syringes, with more than 99% of errors involving overdosing.
This is the first toxicological study to examine how chronic stress modifies the effect of fine particle air pollution on respiratory function. Higher exposures to traffic-related air pollution were associated with a rapid, shallow breathing pattern only among chronically stressed rats. The findings suggest that changes in the immune and inflammatory responses of stressed rats may play a role in making them more susceptible to effects of air pollution. The results are consistent with human studies that report stronger health effects of air pollution among those who experience higher levels of social stressors, such as exposure to violence. This work may shed insight on existing health disparities since lower income populations often experience higher levels of environmental exposures and social stressors.
Children exposed to higher levels of pesticide found on commercially grown fruit and vegetables in the United States were more likely to have ADHD in this study. Researchers in the United States and Canada studied data from 1,139 children aged between 8 and 15 and found that children with higher residue levels of pesticides known as organophosphates were roughly twice as likely to have ADHD. The study adds to the accumulating evidence linking higher levels of pesticide exposure to adverse developmental outcomes.
The CCHP-CCHC eNews is compiled by the California Childcare Health Program (CCHP) and funded by the California Department of Public Health, Maternal, Child, and Adolescent Health. CCHP is administered by the University of California, San Francisco School of Nursing.