Prather Pediatric and Allergy Center - Ask Doctor Brent

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Title: Foster Care

Category: Access To Children's Health Care


Foster children number in the millions in the United States today. They are especially needy of good consistent medical care. They tend to move from home to home and even from state to state. Because of this moving, their medical care gets very disjointed. The American Academy of Pediatrics Adoption and Foster Care Committee has written a position paper with several recommendations. The first recommendations is that a medical passport be used for all foster children and this passport follow them from doctor to doctor, foster home to foster home and state to state. This would at least, for the time being, help to keep their vital medical records available for all care givers in every aspect of their care. Ultimately, if we ever get a sophisticated computerized system for all foster kids in society, this will become obsolete but the odds are that is several years in the coming. Foster kids, statistically, are in need of medical care in a much greater way than the average child who is not in foster care. They have emotional and psychological, physical, health, mental and developmental problems. These are all expected in light of the rough home situations which led them to be placed in foster homes. Anyone who works with foster kids, such as social workers, public health nurses, pediatricians, family doctors or child welfare workers, can receive specific information on how to best serve these children through the American Academy of Pediatrics by writing:

The American Academy of Pediatrics
P.O. Box 927
Elkgrove Village, IL

Att: Committee on Adoption and Foster Care

for position statements, guidelines and any help which they may need in better fulfilling their goal to help these children.

God Bless everyone in the foster care system, from the foster care parents to the children themselves and to the families who temporarily lose their children. May we all help by being good advocates for these foster kids while they are young and totally dependent and later as they enter adulthood.