Marianne: April 2012 Archives
Posted by Marianne Frederick
According to an article by Dr. Gopal Singh et al, infant mortality in the United States has declined steadily since 1933, but in 2010 the US was ranked 23rd in the world's countries in infant mortality. The US' infant mortality rate is higher than most other industrialized nations, and while it is on the decline in the US, the rate of decline is still slower than that of many other industrialized nations.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1615523/pdf/amjph00445-0063.pdf
There is good news, however. An April 27, 2012, article by Linda Davidson in The Washington Post, noted that the infant mortality rate in Washington, D.C., is at "an historic low." The District's infant mortality rate in 1989 had been one of the highest in large U.S. cities, reaching apeak in 1989 at 23.1 per 1,000 births. The rate is still higher than the national infant mortality rate of 6.1 per 1,000 births, but below cities such as Baltimore (11), Richmond (13.5) and Detroit (12.8) http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/dc-infant-mortality-rate-at-historic-low/2012/04/25/gIQAJidAiT_story.html?wpisrc=nl_headlines
Davidson says,"Infant mortality is considered one of the key indicators of a community's well-being. Its leading causes include birth defects, maternal complications of pregnancy, low birth weight and sudden infant death syndrome." Poverty and lack of access to health care are also major determining factors in infant mortality.
One organization that has endeavored to make a difference in the area of infant mortality is Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies! In 2011, the Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies celebrated the 30th anniversary of its founding in 1981,following the US Surgeon General's conference on infant mortality. Six major organizations pulled together to improve the dissemination and quality of public and professional education related to prenatal and infant care. Those lead organizations, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the March of Dimes, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Nurses Association (ANA), the National Congress of Parents and Teachers and the US Public Health Service, continue to play an active role in making sure Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies serves as a resource in the field of maternal and child health. The organization serves as a resource to an estimated 10 million health care professionals, parents, and policymakers through its membership of more than 100 local, state and national organizations and creates partnerships among community groups, nonprofits, professional associations, businesses and government agencies to improve the health and safety of mothers and babies through educational materials and collaborative partnerships.
By Marianne Frederick
A review of a study in an article by Todd Neale in MedPage Today of April 2, 2012, shows that only about half of children preschool age or below are taken outside at least once a day to play! This surprising revelation was also reported in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.
Examination of the study's results by Seattle (Washington) Children's Research Institute, by Poojah Tandon, MD, MPH, dealt with a large survey group consisting of 8,950 children aged four, or children who were one year away from attending kindergarten-level school. The study data supplied by the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort tracking children born from 2001 showed "girls, non-white children and children in some types of daycare were less likely to have a parent take them outside every day." Most of the children in the study (80%) spent almost 30 hours/week in non-parental daycare. Sixty percent of the mothers of the almost 9,000 children worked outside the home, but only 44% of the parents--mothers or fathers--reported taking their kids outside to play once a day.http://www.medpagetoday.com/Pediatrics/GeneralPediatrics/31977?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DailyHeadlines&utm_source=WCemail@example.com&mu_id=5317771.
In the study, there was no association to the probability of children playing out of doors regularly vis à vis the amount of time children time spent watching TV or playing video games. Nor were there indicators of the family's household income or the parents' perception of the safety of the neighborhoods in which they lived. The researchers noted that the study's survey was limited in detail and believed that "future studies that better quantify outdoor time" and its benefits to children would be important.
One thing many children's health and safety experts agree about is that outdoor play for children is generally very good and parents as role models for young children can encourage this practice safely. Some simple guidelines for parents of young children for their safe outdoor play are:
- Very young children playing outside need to be closely supervised by a parent, caregiver or family member.
- Play area surfaces should be thick and soft if you have an option! If it's a playground, make sure there is no broken glass or uneven pavement where a little one could trip, fall and hurt themselves.
- Play toys and equipment should be in good condition--no rusty swing sets, no sharp edges, no loose or broken parts, please!
- When riding tricycles or other wheeled toys, put a helmet on their head.
- As with any play, make sure toys and equipment used are age appropriate--young children should not be using the same equipment older children use.
- Watch the weather--if it's too cold or very hot, use caution--young children get can get too chilled or overheated fast. Make sure children are dressed appropriately for the weather outside. Don't forget to use sunscreen on their nose, ears, hands, etc.
- If little shoes get wet during play, make sure to remove their shoes and thoroughly dry their feet (and put on dry socks) when they come indoors; and
- Have fun with your children and at the same time remember to play safely!
Posted by Marianne Frederick
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Todson Inc., of North Attleboro, Massachusetts, have announced the recall of 40,000 Topeak Babyseat™ II Bicycle Carrier Seats due to a recent reports of safety hazards.
The Topeak Babyseat has an opening at the grab bar's hinge mechanism where a baby's fingers can be caught and pinched. When an adult attempts to lift the grab-bar to remove the child from the seat, if the fingers are caught in the hinge mechanism, this can cause a laceration or amputation hazard. The firm has received two reports of near amputations requiring stitches and one of report of a child's crushed finger.
The Topeak Babyseats involved are Models number TCS2100, TCS2101 and TCS2102. The model numbers can be located on the product's packaging. The Babyseats are made of gray plastic with "Topeak" embossed on the Babyseat's seat back. The Babyseats were manufactured in Taiwan and imported by Todson Inc.
The Babyseats were sold by J&B Imports, REI, Action and Hawley, independent bicycle dealers, distributors and retail stores throughout the country and online at REI.com, from January 2009 through April 2012. The Babyseats ranged in price from $140 to $180 and were available in several styles: Babyseat, Babyseat with disc brake compatible rack, and Babyseat with non-disc brake compatible rack, according to the CPSC's recall announcement.
Parents and caregivers should stop using the Babyseats immediately and contact the Todson to request a free hinge cover kit. The company may be reached by calling toll free 1(800) 250-3068 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, or by visiting the firm's website at www.todson.com.
To view a photo of the Babyseats being recalled, please visit the CPSC website: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12143.html.
Posted by Marianne Frederick
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in cooperation with Happy Shirts of Honolulu, Hawaii and Kohl's, has recalled 9,000 toy trucks sold in gift packages that accompanied boys' "Happy Tee-shirts". The toy trucks are the Big Movers Super Car toy trucks that were gifts with the purchase of Big Movers tee-shirts (in sizes small, medium and large).
While the boys' tee-shirts might make parents happy, the trucks certainly will not, as connections in the toy truck's battery compartment can smolder and catch on fire, posing a fire and burn hazard to the child playing with the truck. Happy Shirts has received a report of one toy truck catching fire and three additional reports of toy trucks having smoldered when the batteries were placed in the toy trucks. To-date no reports of injuries have been received.
The trucks were manufactured in China, imported by Happy Shirts of Honolulu, Hawaii, and sold exclusively by Kohl's between February 2012 and March 2012 for about $20. The blue toy trucks are 4 inches in length, have oversized tires and a flashing light on the top of the truck. A yellow, red and blue logo appears on the hood of the toy truck. (In addition, the trucks are noted to have small parts and represent a choking hazard for children less than 3 years of age.)
Parents need to remove the toy trucks from their children's access and remove the battery in the truck. Consumers may contact the firm, Happy Shirts, for instructions on obtaining a refund by calling toll-free at (855) 354-2779 between noon and 8 p.m. PT (9 a.m. to 5 p.m. HT) Monday through Friday or visit the firm's website atwww.happyshirts.com.
For photos of the Big Movers Super Car toy truck and the tee shirts that accompanied them, parents can visit the CPSC website athttp://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12140.html.