Reflections on Turning 10

American Family Children’s Hospital has come a long way since opening its doors 10 years go. This is truly one of the most beautiful, family-friendly children’s hospitals you will find. It is also a time to reflect on how far we have come since the days of the old UW Children’s Hospital that was located within the much larger University Hospital.

The north end of fourth floor in University Hospital housed Pediatrics. The general inpatient area comprised two units, F6/4 and F4/4, one for the little kids and one for the big kids. Ten steps from the F6/4 nursing station got you into the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) and 25 more got you to the other end. Some would say the origins of HIPAA started here, as there were only 3 private rooms in the 12-bed PICU.

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Don’t forget these school supplies…

This blog has featured a lot of back-to-school posts, from transitioning to high school to what to pack for your dorm.  Just when I thought we had covered most back-to-school topics, a news headline catches my eye:  A Madison community member is partnering with the Boys and Girls Club to provide menstrual products for area schools since some students may not have products handy for various reasons (and you can donate prior to school starting, see below). Add this to the fact that Representative Melissa Sargent (representing Wisconsin’s 48th Assembly District in Madison) and Representative Adam Neylon (representing Assembly District 98 in Pewaukee) have introduced a budget amendment to add feminine hygiene products to the sales tax exemption list (only 8 of the 45 states that collect sales taxes exempt menstrual products). Wow – menstrual products are having a moment! This post will be dedicated to feminine hygiene products, including different types and questions health care providers are frequently asked.
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Beware of the bias!

When you hear reports of research studies with splashy titles, sometimes you have to think twice (and definitely read more than just the headline!)

For example – the most recent splashy headline that’s been all over the news is about Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), the degenerative brain disease that has been linked to concussions. Check out the New York Times article entitled “110 Brains”, detailing that “a neuropathologist has examined the brains of 111 NFL players — and 110 were found to have CTE.”  This article is based on a study published in JAMA. This would seem to imply that 99% of football players suffer from CTE.  Is this true?  Should football be banned since players are almost guaranteed to get CTE? Well, slow down there a moment before burning all your prized football jerseys. Let’s do a brief talk about bias.

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Pumping for Your Baby

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends “exclusive breastfeeding for about six months, followed by continued breastfeeding as complementary foods are introduced, with continuation of breastfeeding for one year or longer as mutually desired by mother and infant.” There are times when mothers are not able to directly breastfeed their infants. This can be by choice, separation of mom and infant or medical needs of either mom or infant. Some mothers will then choose to pump their milk to provide to their baby. It is the next best way for babies to get their nutrition.

Here are some tips for pumping for your baby:

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Your Teen is Legal and Graduated, Now What?

There are a lot of emotions that collide when launching your young adult into the wild world. There are thousands of questions that go through your mind:

  1. Will they pay their bills?
  2. Will they do okay at college? Will they get home sick?
  3. What will they do with their free time?
  4. They’re moving to a new place, will they make friends?
  5. Will they be able to feed themselves?
  6. What if they get sick?

The “launching phase” is when parents or caregivers are helping transition their adult children into the world and adjusting to a new home environment.

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