WMU: Eye-Opening News on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome; Why California Is Failing Its Youngest and Poorest

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WMU: Eye-Opening News on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome; Why California Is Failing Its Youngest and Poorest

The Weekly MashUp is a recurring segment on Hear Me Out, the Young Minds Blog, highlighting the most pertinent local and national news for children’s mental health advocates. If you haven’t already, sign up to be on our email list to get the Weekly MashUp delivered to your inbox each week!


Far More U.S. Children Than Previously Thought May Have Fetal Alcohol Disorders

New York Times – 2.6.18

Far more children in the U.S. may be experiencing effects of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) than previously thought. According to a new study by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), FAS and other alcohol-related disorders could be more common among American children than autism: The study estimates that nationwide, 1.1 to 5 percent of children suffer from fetal alcohol spectrum disorders — about five times more than prior estimates. In comparison, 1.5 percent of children currently have an autism diagnosis. FAS can lead to cognitive, behavioral, and physical problems that negatively impact kids’ development and learning ability.

“If [FAS] truly is affecting a substantial proportion of the population, then we can do something about it,” said Christina Chambers, one of the study’s authors and a professor of pediatrics at the University of California, San Diego. “We can provide better services for those kids, and we can do a better job of preventing the disorders to begin with.”

California Failing Its Youngest and Poorest Children, Study Says

San Jose Mercury – 2.2.18

According to a new report, California is failing to get kids, especially those from low-income families, off to a healthy start. The 2018 California Children’s Report Card was completed by Children Now, an Oakland-based advocacy group. The Report Card surveyed and rated, from grades “A” to “F”, 25 categories related to healthy childhood development. The report found that of California’s 9.1 million children, one in five lives in poverty, and a similar number of youth lack access to adequate food. Moreover, while 97 percent of California’s children have health insurance, many are not able to access quality health care because most physicians do not participate in the state insurance program. In addition, the Report gave the state “D” grades in overall infant and toddler care, academic outcomes, and mental health services for youth.

The findings underscore issues tied to California’s income gap, which has been increasing despite the state’s thriving economy.

“We cannot say we’re a poor state with no resources,” said Children Now President Ted Lempert. “This is a state that is booming, and we’re not serving our kids.”

Upcoming Events:

Call for Abstracts: Adolescent Health And Emerging Adulthood Research Symposium

UC Berkeley School of Public Health –  April 2, 2018 Conference

“The UC Berkeley Center of Excellence in Maternal Child Health and UCSF Leadership Education in Adolescent Health Training Project invite researchers, students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty to present the very latest findings of their work in adolescent health and emerging adulthood at the upcoming 2018 Interdisciplinary Research Symposium. Any area of research related to adolescent health and emerging adulthood will be considered, including but not limited to: social determinants of health, applications of life course theory, environmental health, human development, education, youth with special health care needs, mental health, nutrition, social justice, health equity, and underserved populations.”

Submissions are due by February 26, 2018 at 5PM. Click here for submission guidelines.

More Stories:

No Car, No Care? Medicaid Transportation at Risk

California Healthline – 2.5.18

Indiana Adds Work Requirement to Medicaid, Will Block Coverage if Paperwork Is Late

NPR – 2.2.18

Kickboxing and Kundalini: Part of a Novel Approach to Reducing Charter School Teacher Attrition

EdSource – 2.1.18

Black Infants in the East Bay Are Experiencing Higher Negative Health Outcomes

East Bay Express – 1.31.18

Treating the Lifelong Harm of Childhood Trauma

New York Times – 1.30.18

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