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Disease Area Public health, Infectious diseases

Fostering Better Care

When a child enters foster care, he or she receives a full medical evaluation, including laboratory testing of hemoglobin and lead levels and screening for hepatitis B and C, syphilis, tuberculosis, HIV, and (in sexually active adolescents) gonorrhea and chlamydia. But is all this testing really necessary – and is it worth the cost to the foster care system? New research suggests not (1).

Children entering foster care currently undergo laboratory testing based on recommendations developed by an expert panel in New York, which were last endorsed in 2005 by the American Academy of Pediatrics. “At the time, expert opinion was the highest level of evidence available, as there was very little scientific literature on children in foster care,” explains lead author Mary Greiner, who goes on to say that research is paying increasing attention to this underserved population and opinion is shifting.

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About the Author

Michael Schubert

While obtaining degrees in biology from the University of Alberta and biochemistry from Penn State College of Medicine, I worked as a freelance science and medical writer. I was able to hone my skills in research, presentation and scientific writing by assembling grants and journal articles, speaking at international conferences, and consulting on topics ranging from medical education to comic book science. As much as I’ve enjoyed designing new bacteria and plausible superheroes, though, I’m more pleased than ever to be at Texere, using my writing and editing skills to create great content for a professional audience.

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