Posts

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Children’s advocates want universal free school lunches to continue

Originally posted on The Boston Herald. Advocates are calling on state lawmakers to extend free meals at schools, a program that came into place during the pandemic and is even more important now with food insecurity rates even higher than before COVID hit. “One of the hard lessons of the pandemic is that it showed […]

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The Child Tax Credit Benefits Whole Families: Preliminary data show improved food security and parental health

Summary of Findings New preliminary data from Children’s HealthWatch highlight linkages between Child Tax Credit (CTC) receipt and food security as well as excellent or good parental health status among families with young children. Despite these positive signs, there were notable disparities in which families received the CTC – likely as result of structural racism […]

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Food insufficiency in families with children increased after expiration of Child Tax Credit monthly payments

Summary Advance Child Tax Credit payments that distributed monthly cash payments for children were associated with a 26% reduction in food insufficiency in households with children. After the advance CTC expired in February, there was a 12% increase in food insufficiency in households with children. Conclusions The pandemic and inflation continue to cause economic hardship, […]

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For 25 Years, Food Security Has Included a Nutrition Domain: Is a New Measure of Nutrition Security Needed?

Originally Posted in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (JAND) THE US HOUSEHOLD FOOD SECURITY SURVEY MODULE AND ITS RELATIONSHIP WITH NUTRITION Access to adequate, nutritious food, particularly in early childhood, is essential for keeping current and future generations healthy across the life span. When families lack enough resources to afford competing […]

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A key centerpiece for health in schools: free lunch

Originally posted on The Boston Globe. Ripple effect of these meals is widely felt. Re “Advocates seek to keep school lunch free” (Page A1, March 26): Free school meals directly support the health and development of school-age children by delivering consistent access to nutritious foods. For those who participate, these programs are linked to improved […]

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Validation of an Abbreviated Child and Adult Food Security Scale (ACAFSS)

Originally presented at the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy “25 Years of Food Security Measurement” Conference. Food insecurity is a national public health issue, affecting 14.8% of US households with children. Because food insecurity negatively impacts the physical and mental health of children and their parents, it is crucial to monitor and […]

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Children’s HealthWatch Comments on USPSTF Draft Research Plan: Preventive Services for Food Insecurity

On March 23, 2022, Children’s HealthWatch submitted comments to the USPSTF Coordinator on the Draft Research Plan for “Preventive Services for Food Insecurity.” The commentary addresses 5 proposed key questions, 7 proposed contextual questions, and the proposed research approach in the plan.

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Doctors and health systems find novel ways to address hunger and its causes

Originally posted on Fern’s AG Insider. Allison Bovell-Ammon, director of policy strategy at Children’s HealthWatch, an advocacy and research organization headquartered at Boston Medical Center, described some of the ways the medical center addresses the drivers of health inequities. It started the first hospital-based food pantry in the country and has subsequently added a range […]

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For Immigrant Mothers, WIC Nutrition Program Led to Healthier Infant Birth Weights

Originally posted on HealthCity. The Bottom Line | Participation in Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) during pregnancy by immigrant mothers with low incomes is associated with healthier birth weights among infants born in the U.S. Context | An infant’s birth weight is an indicator of the mother’s prenatal health and a predictor […]

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Prenatal WIC is Associated with Increased Birthweight of Infants Born in the United States with Immigrant Mothers

Background: The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) improves health outcomes for participating mothers and children. Recent immigration policy changes increased chilling effects on WIC access and utilization. Associations between WIC participation and neonatal outcomes among infants born to immigrant parent(s)—23% of all births in the United States (US)—are understudied. Objective:To examine […]