Friday, June 23, 2017

Thousands of Kids At Risk of Not Getting Vaccines 
Tara Doman, MD
Timothy Wall, MD

Dr. Wall and Dr. Doman were interviewed by NBC news on the effects of the state budget crisis on healthcare services.  Whether your child is on private insurance or Medicaid they are at risk of disease outbreaks this school year if the State of Illinois doesn't pass a budget by the end of June. With Illinois not having a budget for the past two years payments to physicians are stalled leaving medical practices and hospitals with a huge debt crisis.    

This past fall the state ruled that children on the Medicaid Title 21 program could no longer receive state funded vaccines but would reimburse physicians for the cost of private vaccinations. With some vaccines costing over $150 (set by the manufacturer) the outlay of cash has been considerable for practices.  Unfortunately with the state budget crisis, Pediatric Health along with most practices who accept Medicaid patients have not been reimbursed.

With people traveling worldwide the potential threat of diseases being shared in this country is very real.  Unvaccinated children may be in school, church or camp with your children.   This is especially concerning if you have a young child who because of age hasn't had all immunizations yet.   We have seen groups of college students here in DuPage County that have had the measles.   It only takes one measles case to start an epidemic.

The budget crisis affects more than just our children....if impacts seniors in nursing homes, people who are disabled and need special services and it  affects many single parents raising kids on their own.   The bottom line is that all of our kids are at risk.  Please consider contacting your state rep or senator and the governor to encourage resolution of the budget crisis.

You can view the interview at:

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Pediatric Health Associates is participating in "Days of Action" to protect Medicaid on June 15th and June 22nd. The Senate is considering a health care bill as we speak that would drastically change Medicaid (insurance coverage for kids). 

Please consider joining us this week by calling your U.S. senators (see contact info below) and urge them to vote “no” on any proposal that cuts or caps Medicaid funding in any way. These changes would endanger the way the program works now to effectively cover 37 million children.

Contact Senator Dick Durbin:



From the Desk of Katie Farager, CPNP
Katie Faragher

Summer vacation has begun! Sun protection is necessary to remain safe while playing outside throughout the summer.

Sunburn Protection:
-Babies younger than 6 months should be kept out of direct sunlight.  A baby's skin is more delicate and thin than an adult's  and it burns and irritates more easily. Try to find shade beneath a tree, umbrella, or stroller canopy.
-Limit sun exposure between 10am and 4pm when UV rays are the strongest.
-Children should be dressed in lightweight, comfortable clothing that covers the body when possible.
-Clothing made with a tight weave are more protective than clothing with a looser weave.  This is determined by observing how much light shines through the fabric.  The less light that shines through the clothing, the better.  Purchasing protective clothing that is labeled with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) is another option.
-Hats should have a 3-inch brim to shield the face, ears, and back of neck.
-Wear sunglasses with a minimum of 99% UV protection.
-Use sunscreen!

-Babies younger than 6 months--apply sunscreen on small areas of the body, such as the face, if protective clothing and shade are not available.
-Babies older than 6 months--apply sunscreen to all areas of the body, use caution around the eyes.
-Pick a sunscreen that says "broad-spectrum" on the label to protect from both UVB and UVA rays.
-Sun protection factor (SPF) should be at least 15-30.  More research is needed to determine if SPF 50 or higher offers extra protection.
-Sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide should be used on sensitive areas of the body including the nose, cheeks, top of the ears and shoulders.
-Apply a generous amount of sunscreen to all exposed areas and rub in well.  Sunscreen should be applied 15-30 minutes before going outside to allow time to absorb into skin.
-Sunscreen should be used anytime your child spends time outdoors, even if it is cloudy outside.  Even on cloudy days, up to 80% of the sun's UV rays can get through the clouds!  UV rays can also reflect or bounce back from water, sand, snow and concrete.
-Reapply sunscreen at least every 2 hours and after swimming, sweating, or drying off with a towel.  

Additional sun protection guidelines are available below:

Friday, June 9, 2017

A new interactive tool is available to help parents assess whether their child’s physical development is on target for their age.  Developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy, this tool is designed for parents who have concerns about their child’s physical activity up to age  five.  

Called the “Physical Developmental Delays: What to Look For” can be found at  and is provided at no cost.

Sometimes it’s very hard to figure out if there are delays.   For example if an infant always uses the same hand to bring a toy to their mouth could be an indicator that there is a motor delay. But remember, all children develop at their own pace and many delays are not serious.  If you do have a concern that these delays might be of a more serious nature, we encourage you to try the tool as some children may have conditions such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy.  Early intervention is important to help your child reach their full potential.

Don’t hesitate to talk with your pediatrician if you are worried.  We are here to help you and can connect you to appropriate therapy if necessary.

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Friday, June 2, 2017

From the desk of Josie Dawe, CPNP  
Josie Dawe, CPNP

It's summer time, the time when children commonly experience insect bites. Insects that bite include mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, chiggers, and flies. While most insect bites are harmless, some can be dangerous. One way to protect your child is through the proper use of insect repellents.

Insect repellents come in many forms including sprays, liquids, creams and sticks and can be made of both chemical and natural ingredients. DEET containing products generally provide best defense, but should be used cautiously in children. The amount of DEET in products can range so be sure to read of label. In general products containing 10% DEET repel insects for 2 hours, and those containing 30% DEET repel insects for 5 hours. Studies show products with greater than 30% DEET show no additional protection and should not be used in children.

Here are some Do's and Don'ts for safe use of insect repellent.

  • Only apply insect repellents on the outside of clothes and to exposed skin.
  • Wash skin with soap and water to remove any remaining repellent once returning to indoors.
  • Use only enough repellent to cover clothing and exposed skin…. using more does not make the repellent more effective.
  • Use caution when applying repellent to the face, especially around the eyes, mouth and ears.
  • Parents should apply repellents, as children may inadvertently ingest it through hand-to-mouth activity.
  • Never apply insect repellent to children younger than 2 months of age.
  • Never apply insect repellent to cuts, wounds or irritated skin.
  • Do not use products that combine DEET with sunscreen. The DEET may make the sun protection factor (SPF) less effective and can overexpose your child to DEET since sunscreen needs to be reapplied often.
Additional ways to protect your child from insect bites include dressing them in lightweight long pants and sleeves with closed toed shoes and socks; avoiding brightly colored clothing; keeping door and window screens  in good repair; and avoiding scented soaps, perfumes, and hair sprays.

If your child is playing outdoors in an area where ticks are present be sure to check your child's skin for ticks. The most effective repellent for ticks is permethrin, which should only be applied to your child's clothing. Remember permethrin should never be applied to children's skin.

For more information visit: