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Technology Makes Way for Change in Children’s Healthcare

This blog originally appeared on the Huffington Post.

As a parent, we all understand that the health of our child takes precedence over economic concerns, geographic distance, and just about any barrier you can name. Many parents know the stress of finding the right doctor to treat a child’s illness, and the difficulties involved in traveling to see that one specific doctor. For critically ill children, the long wait to see a pediatric specialist can be devastating.

About 1 million children in California have ongoing physical, behavioral, mental, or emotional conditions that can affect their ability to function and participate in activities important to their development and, in some cases, can shorten their lives. According to a recent report published by the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health, these children with special healthcare needs use more healthcare services than other children and account for more than 40 percent of all healthcare cost among children nationwide, despite making up only 16 percent of the U.S. child population. Though advances in medical care have extended and improved the lives of millions of children, more than four in five of children with special healthcare needs still fail to receive one or more basic aspects of quality healthcare, statewide and nationally.

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The Unhealthy State of Children’s Healthcare

March 8, 2013 at 9:17 am PST
Yu_Yi

Cisco Senior Director of Corporate Affairs Yu Yi

It is well known fact that pediatric specialists are in high demand but short supply in the United States and around the world. Sixteen U.S. states have fewer than one pediatric subspecialist under age 65 per 100,000 residents, according to the National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions.

As a result, many children and their families are forced to travel long distances to get adequate care. In some regions, patients may wait as long as three to six months for an appointment.

Today on the Huffington Post ImpactX, Cisco Senior Director of Cisco Corporate Affairs Yu Yi explains how this shortage of healthcare professionals can lead to significant complications in adulthood.

“The current system can also lead to inconsistent knowledge and information exchange between patients, primary care pediatricians, and pediatric specialists,” Yu Yi wrote. “Consequently, children with complex care requirements receive less effective care and experience poor outcomes.”

Please read Yu Yi’s full blog on the Huffington Post.

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