Kirsten Yeates was worried. Her newborn daughter, Riley, wouldn’t sleep more than a few minutes without being held and rocked. At just a few weeks old, she’d begun vomiting several times a day. Yeates asked Riley’s pediatrician what was wrong. He reassured her that Riley was fine, Yeates said. During the next 2 1/2 years, she asked her daughter’s doctors in Sacramento whether it was normal that Riley didn’t respond to her own name, didn’t seem to hear well, was refusing solid foods and frequently spiked high fevers. Over and over, Yeates said, she heard the same response: “She’s fine.” Reached on the phone, Riley’s pediatrician from that time said he did not remember her specifically, because she has not been his patient for several years. But he said he routinely screens 18-month-olds, and follows up when a parent voices concern about developmental issues. Yeates, however, said she only remembers the pediatrician … [Read more...] about What’s wrong with my child? California has a problem in easing parents’ fears
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Dr. Benjamin Spock talks with newsmen outside the Federal Building in Boston, Jan. 29, 1968, after pleading innocent to charges of counseling young men to avoid the draft. (J. Walter Green/AP) He was America’s most beloved and trusted pediatrician, with millions of parents following his instructions for caring for babies and children. So the Jan. 5, 1968, federal indictments against Dr. Benjamin Spock and four other Vietnam War opponents stunned the nation. The New York Times and The Washington Post gave the story front-page play. The men, accused of conspiring to urge people to violate draft laws, earned so much notoriety that they even had a nickname: “The Boston Five.” But most people cared only about the fate of Spock, whose seminal work, “The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care,” first published in 1946, had become the foundation of American parenthood. “Don’t be afraid to kiss your baby when you feel like it,” Spock … [Read more...] about He was America’s most famous pediatrician. Then Dr. Spock attacked the Vietnam draft.
The doting aunt in her tight-knit family and the Pied Piper on TODAY segments with kids, Hoda Kotb never let on to friends just how much she wanted a child of her own. So when she met her adopted daughter on Valentine’s Day, “I was exploding in tears,” she tells People magazine, where she appears on the cover with her “dream baby,” Haley Joy. “It was like a puzzle piece that just snapped in. I felt it,” she said about holding Haley for the first time. “It was as if she had been with me forever.” RELATED: It's a girl! Hoda Kotb announces she's adopted a baby Hoda, 52, revealed she had nearly given up on the idea of becoming a mom after her treatment a decade ago for breast cancer left her unable to conceive. She then got divorced less than a year after her recovery. While she had … [Read more...] about Hoda Kotb graces cover of People magazine with her ‘dream baby,’ Haley Joy
The grounds of St. Mary’s Cemetery in Lynn, Massachusetts, slope up to the southwest in terraced sections bordered by a mossy stone wall. Tucked toward the top of the rise is a small section where they bury babies. Tiny graves, each about 24 inches wide, are lined up together.In one row, the third baby grave from the left could be mistaken for a gap between graves, a break in the line, because it is unmarked and has no headstone. Still, there is a homemade cross pounded into the ground: two pieces of wood nailed together. The white paint is fading.And though there is no name there, in this ground a little baby girl, who died in January 2012, is buried. The baby died eight days after she was put in the care of a giant corporation, the nation’s biggest for-profit foster care provider, National Mentor Holdings. It’s a company that has a troubled record, as a recent BuzzFeed News investigation showed, and it operates thousands of foster homes nationwide, 500 of them in … [Read more...] about In An Unmarked Grave, A Baby Who Died On For-Profit Foster Company’s Watch
Some internet users are shocked and stunned after video surfaced of a 6-month-old Florida baby struggling to swim as her mother watches on. The two-minute video, uploaded to Facebook by user Dov, shows a bubbly baby girl in a yellow dress being lured out into a pool. She plunges in after a bright, flowered sandal and her head goes under, but neither of the adults step in to help her. Instead, they watch as she struggles and ends up floating on her back. PEDIATRICIANS URGE PARENTS TO NEVER TAKE EYES OFF CHILDREN WHILE THEY ARE EVEN NEAR THE WATER One of the onlooking adults encourages her, saying, “Good girl, good girl.” At the end of the video, the baby is lifted out of the water and an adult says, “I’ve got you, baby.” The post is captioned, "So hard to watch but every kid should learn this young.” The video — which had been viewed more than 600,000 times by Monday morning — has drawn both anger and … [Read more...] about SEE IT: Controversial video shows 6-month-old baby struggling to swim as mother looks on
We now know the consequence for beating a child and starving her literally to death.Short answer: not enough. Not nearly enough.Maybe you remember the story of Za’Naya Flores.The Tucson tot was born in 2010 and immediately put into foster care while her 21-year-old mother, Kiyana Higgins, remained in jail awaiting trial on charges that she’d broken the leg of another of her five children. (Za’Naya’s father, meanwhile, was headed to prison for cutting Higgins with a knife and choking her with a TV cable cord.)Higgins was acquitted when Za’Naya was two months old, and Child Protective Services immediately began making plans to reunify the mother with her five children – never mind the kids’ descriptions to police of the beatings they had endured.According to CPS records, a foster-care specialist tried to warn Za’Naya’s caseworker to take a closer look, noting Higgins’ disinterest in the child. It seems the mother never … [Read more...] about Roberts: Justice for Za’Naya? Or just another way we’ve failed this child?
It’s the hardest part of her job — maybe of any job — but Kathryn McCans is all too familiar with it.“I don’t want to tell anybody their baby is dead,” said McCans, a pediatric emergency physician at Cooper University Hospital in Camden. “I’ve done that enough.”When that death is caused by accidental strangulation or suffocation in an unsafe sleeping environment, it’s even more gut-wrenching.“The idea that this doesn’t have to happen . . . there’s nothing more tragic than that,” McCans said.Yet it does happen. McCans said there are roughly 50 cases of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) each year in New Jersey. Experts believe the vast majority of those easily could be prevented.That’s why, as chair of New Jersey’s Child Fatality & Near Fatality Review Board, McCans announced a much-publicized initiative in January: 100,000 free “baby boxes” available to new Garden … [Read more...] about Should you put a newborn in a baby box? 4 questions with an expert
RIO PIEDRAS, Puerto Rico - As he chips golf balls onto a putting green in his back yard, Oscar De La Hoya longingly points to a spot in the distance, amid the lush green mountains behind his home, to a golf course where he sometimes sneaks away in the morning to play a quick round. Inside the house, his infant son sleeps, having confused his days for nights, the way most newborns do. De La Hoya is fretting about an afternoon appointment with the pediatrician for the baby's first shots. Inside his mahogany-paneled office, proposals and deals from the many arms of his Golden Boy companies await his approval. Even so, De La Hoya seems at peace in his Eden-like back yard. De La Hoya's home is a sanctuary from the rigors of his job - boxer-turned-boxing promoter - and the controversy that inevitably surrounds it: He comes to the Spanish-style hacienda, which he shares with his wife, Millie, his infant son, Oscar Gabriel, and two dogs, to rest and regenerate. De La Hoya, who was born … [Read more...] about IN HIS GOLDEN YEARS. Buoyed by new business ventures & two last fights, De La Hoya has never felt more at home
When AIDS first emerged in New York, people were so terrified of the disease that patients were shunned - at times even by nurses, doctors and social workers. But almost immediately, heroes began to emerge to fight the disease as well as the ignorance and discrimination associated with it. Some of those grabbed headlines - such as the fiery Larry Kramer, founder of the Gay Men's Health Crisis, and state Sen. Thomas Duane, the first elected official in the state to run as an openly HIV-positive candidate. Others toiled behind the scenes - for instance, Dr. Donna Mildvan, director of AIDS Research at Beth Israel Medical Center and one of the first physicians to link cases in the emerging epidemic. Then there's Columbia University's Dr. Zena Stein, a pioneer in the movement to provide microbicides so women could protect themselves. Some unlikely heroes emerged, including Princess Diana, with those iconic images of her hugging AIDS patients. The philanthropy of Bill Gates, the … [Read more...] about SALUTE TO SOLDIERS IN WAR AGAINST AIDS. Leaders of struggle to beat the disease
Instead of planning her first birthday party, I thought about her funeral. And I began to imagine a life without her. Satya, the cherub-cheeked little lady we had brought into the world 10 months ago, had just been diagnosed with cancer. It was Stage 1, she was well under 18 months old and otherwise healthy. As if “otherwise healthy” mattered, the facts were that an MRI showed a tumor sitting between her kidney and aorta, dangerously close to her heart. Our hearts. Satya’s name came to me in a dream. When I woke up there was only one word on my lips (Satya is Sanskrit for truth). I knew her middle name would be Devi (Sanskrit for goddess) after my grandmother. Our daughter would be Satya Devi Singh, translated it means Truth Goddess Lion. Good luck keeping this kid down, I thought, as I traced the letters over and over on my pregnant belly. Satya was supposed to arrive on December 17, 2013. Instead, she showed up on November 17, early, eager and incredibly … [Read more...] about To hell and back: How my 10-month-old daughter beat rare cancer