Abstract: This article concerns a therapeutic intervention with a group of abandoned children living in a Romanian pediatric hospital. The children, ranging in age from one to ten years old, had suffered chronic neglect and abuse. They had previously spent most of their lives tied in the same cot in the same hospital ward. They were poorly fed and their nappies were rarely changed. Although able to see and hear the other abused children, they experienced little in the way of social interaction. The article focuses on the play-based methods that were employed to aid the children’s recovery, while at the same time highlighting the general benefits of this very specific therapeutic approach to children’s recovery and development. In particular, there is an exploration of concepts such as symbolic representation, negative capability, joining, and the significance of play cues. However, despite the clear value of these individually focused techniques, the article proposes the tentative hypothesis that the most powerful healing factor was the unfettered playful interaction between the children themselves. In other words, the children in a very real sense may have healed each other while playing.
Abstract: This paper addresses an often overlooked aspect of climate change impacts on child health: the amplification of existing child health inequities by climate change. Although the effects of climate change on child health will likely be negative, the distribution of these impacts across populations will be uneven. The burden of climate change-related ill-health will fall heavily on the world’s poorest and socially-disadvantaged children, who already have poor survival rates and low life expectancies due to issues including poverty, endemic disease, undernutrition, inadequate living conditions and socio-economic disadvantage. Climate change will exacerbate these existing inequities to disproportionately affect disadvantaged children. We discuss heat stress, extreme weather events, vector-borne diseases and undernutrition as exemplars of the complex interactions between climate change and inequities in child health.
Abstract: Emeritus Professor A. J. “Tony” McMichael (1942–2014) was an internationally renowned and pioneering Australian academic and advocate in epidemiology, who was passionate about understanding the influences of the environment on human health. In an illustrious career spanning more than four decades, he made significant contributions to the scientific community and policy discourse—including ground-breaking research related to the health of children. McMichael was a prolific academic writer with over 300 peer-reviewed papers; 160 book chapters and two sole-authored books. However, his outstanding talent was for integrating complex and seemingly unrelated strands from the environmental and health sciences into a cohesive narrative—and highlighting its relevance to lay persons, scientists and governments alike. He was instrumental in validating this nascent field of research and inspiring many others to follow his lead.
Abstract: Birth Asphyxia is considered to be one of the leading causes of neonatal mortality around the world. Asphyxiated neonates require skilled resuscitation to survive the neonatal period. The project aims to train health professionals in a basic newborn care using a prototype with an ultimate objective to have one person at every delivery trained in neonatal resuscitation. This prototype will be a user-friendly device with which one can get trained in performing neonatal resuscitation in resource-limited settings. The prototype consists of a Force Sensing Resistor (FSR) that measures the pressure applied and is interfaced with Arduino® which controls the Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) and Light Emitting Diode (LED) indication for pressure and compression counts. With the increase in population and absence of proper medical care, the need for neonatal resuscitation program is not well addressed. The proposed work aims at offering a promising solution for training health care individuals on resuscitating newborn babies under low resource settings.
Abstract: Integrative Therapies (IT), otherwise known as Complementary and Alternative Medicine, are widely used among pediatric oncology patients, despite a paucity of available evidence. This review summarizes surveys that describe the prevalence of IT use by pediatric oncology patients, both during therapy and in survivorship, as well as the modalities being used. Additionally, the evidence that exists for specific treatments that appear to be efficacious in controlling specific symptoms is described. Finally, there are recommendations for practitioners on how to best counsel patients about IT use.
Abstract: The human immune system is an interface across which many climate change sensitive exposures can affect health outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the range of potential effects that climate change could have on immune function will be of considerable importance, particularly for child health, but has, as yet, received minimal research attention. We postulate several mechanisms whereby climate change sensitive exposures and conditions will subtly impair aspects of the human immune response, thereby altering the distribution of vulnerability within populations—particularly for children—to infection and disease. Key climate change-sensitive pathways include under-nutrition, psychological stress and exposure to ambient ultraviolet radiation, with effects on susceptibility to infection, allergy and autoimmune diseases. Other climate change sensitive exposures may also be important and interact, either additively or synergistically, to alter health risks. Conducting directed research in this area is imperative as the potential public health implications of climate change-induced weakening of the immune system at both individual and population levels are profound. This is particularly relevant for the already vulnerable children of the developing world, who will bear a disproportionate burden of future adverse environmental and geopolitical consequences of climate change.