Child Development

Submitted by Sandy Kristin P... on Wed, 02/02/2005 - 12:32.

I attended the panel yesterday at the Natural History museum, and I commend Ed Morrison and Roberta Waxman-Lentz for recruiting such a wonderful variety of speakers. I was impressed with the work that has already been done in Northeast Ohio to begin connecting child development work and economic development work, though there is still much work to be done.

I look forward to attending the next session so that we can begin as a community to formulate action plans.

One thing that surprised me was that the discussion of children's learning was so disconnected from the discussion of children's health. The Invest in Children booklet which was distributed at the event mentioned the goals of ensuring that all children receive timely healthcare and vaccinations, and of reducing the number of children exposed to lead, but says nothing about breastfeeding rates. The latest research from the Centers for Disease Control shows that in Cuyahoga County, only 55% of infants are ever breastfed, and only 25% continue to be breastfed at 6 months of age which is below the average rates in other parts of the country, and far below the target rates that were set for 2010 by the Department of Health and Human Services Blueprint for Action.

I am working on developing a network of healthcare professionals, breastfeeding supporters, concerned citizens, employers, and insurance company representatives to address the status of breastfeeding in northeast Ohio. How might we partner with the supporters of early childhood education and development?

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