Improving the health of young children is of fundamental importance. With global health efforts, the number of children dying before the age of five has nearly halved. And more mothers and children survive today than ever before. Unfortunately, more than half of these child deaths are preventable or treatable. The global community faces a double mandate. Investing in the health of children is the first and most important step in eradicating poverty. By 2025, the world must eliminate poverty by achieving universal access to quality health care.
To address this, we have developed a framework for assessing child health outcomes. The goal of domains of child health is to make sure that the health outcomes are consistent across developmental stages and are representative of a range of different outcomes. In addition to identifying the health outcomes of children, it recognizes the role of previous health in affecting the future health. The following domains of child health are the most common and useful for child health evaluations.
The committee’s definition of health considers health as a positive resource that gives children the ability to interact with their environment and respond to life’s challenges. They also consider development, citing the fundamental principle of development as optimization of function over time. The framework emphasizes the intrinsic qualities of children and their resources to interact with their environment. But how do we define health? Developing a conceptual framework is the first step in ensuring that the framework is as useful as possible.
Medications may be prescribed for children to alleviate symptoms of childhood illness. These medications must be taken according to directions, especially for children. Parents should inform their pediatrician of any other medications they may be taking for their children. Antibiotics should be taken for the full course as recommended. Counseling is typically the front-line treatment for psychological disorders and can involve cognitive behavioral therapy. You and your child’s doctor should discuss the appropriateness of these measures and what steps are needed to manage the condition.
Addressing the underlying determinants of child health is a critical component of tackling poverty. The poor are disproportionately affected by these problems, and policies that address these disadvantages can help them overcome these challenges. Some policies that are effective include additional food, insecticide-treated nets, and access to antibiotics and antimalarials. Furthermore, they can help poor mothers and their children deliver safely. However, these policies are only effective if they reach the poorest households.
Several research organizations have produced tools and training for clinicians to apply biofeedback to help parents raise children. The Biofeedback Certification Institute of America, Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, and the Bright Future project are just a few examples. Child health providers should adopt a systematic screening process for identifying mental disorders and symptoms in young children. These tools include the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and the Bright Future project, recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.