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‘Growing Healthy Children’ Child Health Conference– November 10-12, 2005

     WV Healthy Kids and Families Coalition is pleased to announce that planning is underway for West Virginia’s first conference on children’s health, “Growing Healthy Children: Conversations About West Virginia’s Future” . The conference will be held November 10-12, 2005 at the Embassy Suites in Charleston. First Lady Gayle Manchin and Dr. Joan Phillips, president of the West Virginia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, will co-chair the conference.
     The conference will bring together professionals who work with children and policymakers. National and state leaders in child health will present on such topics as oral health, health access and quality, wellness, and prenatal wellness and child development.  It is the hope of the WV Healthy Kids and Families Coalition and all of its partners that this conference is just the beginning of a conversation about how we make children’s health a top priority in West Virginia.
     An e-news service has been developed to give you ongoing conference updates about sponsorships, exhibit information, national speaker profiles, and other exciting surprises planned for the conference. Conference registration brochures will be sent out and be available online in early September. Early registration is recommended, as space is limited.
     To register for email updates, please sign up at www.wvhealthykids.org. For sponsorship and partnership opportunities, contact Renate Pore at
renateepore.pore@verizon.net or call 304-346-8815.
For exhibitor information contact Julie Greathouse at jdg_outreach@hotmail.com or call 304-532-6883.

Speaker Spotlight– Dr. Rob Anda

     The ‘Growing Healthy Children’ Child Health Conference will feature many wonderful speakers. Dr. Rob Anda will make a presentation on the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACE).
The ACE Study is a 10-year project of the Centers for Disease Control and Kaiser Permanente to assess the long-term relationships between a wide range of adverse, traumatic, or chaotic childhood experiences on health, health behavior, social well-being, disease incidence, and the costs of medical care. The strength of the relationship between ACEs and these outcomes bring child health issues to the forefront of prevention activities and have made Dr. Anda a passionate advocate for the health and well-being of children. For more information, visit www.acestudy.org

‘Back to School’ Campaign 2005

     On August 2, 2020, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will kick off its sixth annual Covering Kids & Families Back-to-School Campaign in Washington, D.C. The campaign encourages parents to include enrolling their eligible, uninsured children in Medicaid or the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) as an important part of getting their children ready for the new school year. When children are healthy, they are better prepared to learn in the classroom and stay active on the playing field.
     The kick off will begin at 10:00 a.m. EDT with a news conference featuring Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., M.B.A., President and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Sarah Shuptrine, Founder, President and CEO of the Southern Institute on Children and Families, Vice Admiral Richard H. Carmona, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.S., U.S. Surgeon General and Anthony Williams, Mayor of the District of Columbia.
     As a component of the national launch, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will release a new analysis of data regarding uninsured children compiled by the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) and the Urban Institute. The report uses data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics (2003 National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) and 1998-2003 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS)) and the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2003-2004 Current Population Survey (CPS).
     Many partners across West Virginia are planning Back to School enrollment events. If you are planning an event, please email Julie Greathouse at jdg_outreach@hotmail.com so that we can add your event to the list.

Gazette Article:  State Kids Doing Poorly
WV Gazette July 27, 2020
By Scott Finn
Staff writer

     West Virginia received its worst ranking ever in an annual survey of the well-being of children across the United States.
The Mountain State ranks 47th out of 50 states in the 2005 Kids Count Data Book. Only Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama fared worse in the national study, which was to be released today.
It is the worst ranking ever for West Virginia, said Margie Hale, executive director of the West Virginia Kids Count Fund.
Teenagers in West Virginia were more likely to die from accidents, homicide or suicide in West Virginia than any other state, according to the report.
     That death rate for 15- to 19-year-olds almost doubled between 1997 and 2002, from 57 to 103 teenagers per 100,000.
And after making progress in the last decade, West Virginia appears to be backsliding in a number of other areas, from infant mortality to the high school dropout rate.
     It’s too early to know if numbers signal a trend, Hale said. Small states sometimes see large-looking statistical swings from year to year.
     “This could be a fluke,” she said. “But we need to watch these indicators closely in the years to come.”
     The numbers are for the most recent years available — 2002 in some cases, 2003 in others — according to the report.
     In 2002 in West Virginia, 9.1 infants died out of every 1,000 births - up from 7.6 two years earlier. The state’s infant mortality rate is about the same as it was in 1990, while the national infant mortality rate has improved almost every year.
     In 2003, about 10 percent of the state’s teenagers had dropped out of high school, according to the report, up 2 percent from 2000 and worse than the national rate of 8 percent.
About one in four West Virginia children lived in poverty in 2003, virtually unchanged since 1990 and the fourth-highest rate in the nation.
     The report had one bright spot: the number of children ages 1-14 who died from accidents or violent causes dropped, although it was still above the national average.
     One possible culprit for the worsening child statistics is welfare reform, said Rick Wilson of the American Friends Service Committee-West Virginia.
     There are more than 1,200 families whose five years on welfare has expired, Wilson said, and many of their children are suffering.
“We have a generation growing up where the kids and parents are stressed out. And they’re not going away,” Wilson said. “They’ll show up in hospitals, in foster care, in the juvenile justice system, and some of them will wind up dead.”
     Angie Whitley agrees with Wilson. She runs a program in Wayne and Cabell counties called Team for West Virginia’s Children.
     Whitley sees ex-welfare recipients with mental illnesses and substance abuse problems that make it hard for them to find work. “They’re surviving one day, one meal at a time,” she said.
On the other end of the spectrum, Whitley sees working families who can’t afford health insurance but make too much for government help. One couple she met this week is expecting a baby in January. But they haven’t found a doctor to provide pre-natal care because they have no insurance.
     Whitley would like to see state leaders put more money into programs that have proven to improve health and fight poverty, such as home visitors for new mothers and quality preschool programs. “Why we don’t see improvements is because we’re not investing in the right areas. We need to invest in prevention,” she said.
     To contact staff writer Scott Finn, use e-mail or call 357-4323.

West Virginia Healthy Kids and Families Coalition Office Has Moved

     The WV Healthy Kids and Families Coalition office has moved to the WV Council of Churches office at 2207 Washington Street, East, Charleston, WV 25311. The new phone number is (304)-344-3141.  Please update our contact information. A special thanks to the WVCC for allowing us to share their space.

Benedum Foundation Awards Grant for Project

     The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation has awarded funding to expand the ’What to Do When Your Child Gets Sick’ project that was piloted with the Parents as Teachers Program of the United Way of Central West Virginia. This funding allows the project, which provides a book, information and training for parents on taking care of the minor medical needs of their children, to be expanded to Nicholas Co. Starting Points and MIHOW in Fayette Co.
     The goal is to increase parents’ confidence in taking care of the minor medical needs of their children and reduce the use of Emergency Room and clinic services.

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