The number of babies born with exposure to opioid drugs and alcohol nearly doubled in Rhode Island between 2006 and 2013.
That’s one of the more startling facts in the new Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook. Executive Director Elizabeth Burke-Bryant said unlike earlier drug problems, this one is not concentrated in urban areas.
“90 percent of babies born with drugs in their system, were born to white mothers and 32 percent lived in the four core cities, which means the majority of these cases are spread to the rest of Rhode Island,” said Bryant.
Rhode Island Kids Count found kids enrolled in the health insurance program for low-income children and families have better access to preventative health care. The new study on RIte Care comes on the program’s 20th anniversary.
Childhood health experts gather at a policy roundtable discussion of Rhode Island Kids Count's new issue brief on childhood obesity. From far left, RI Kids Count's Elizabeth Burke Bryant, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island's Peter Andruszkiewicz, and Kids Count analyst James Beasley.
Rhode Island Kids Count releases new numbers on Monday that show 12 percent of young school children in Rhode Island were chronically absent during the last school year, meaning they missed 18 days or more of school.
The study finds that for Kindergarten students who are chronically absent, there is an increased risk of low achievement that persists at least into middle school. The students are also more likely to be held back a grade.
Rhode Island Kids Count Executive Director Elizabeth Burke Bryant says a number of factors can contribute to chronic absenteeism.
Stress can affect developing brains, including the kind of stress that poverty can create. But a strong caregiver can mediate those effects. Those are the findings of a new study in the Journal JAMA Pediatrics. It's not news that stress and poverty can have negative effects.