Keeping Kids Out of Hospitals

Up to 46 percent of the times that kids wind up admitted to a hospital, it could have been easily prevented, according to a study in the November 2003 Pediatrics. The researchers followed hundreds of hospitalized children and surveyed their parents, hospital physicians, and regular physicians to learn what might have helped to avoid the hospitalization.

Asthma hospitalizations were far and away the most common that could be avoided, followed by vomiting and dehydration.

Teaching parents more about their children’s conditions was found to be key to prevention. With asthma, for example, parents needed more instruction on what each medicine actually does, how often it should be given, for how long, and what exactly to do about refills. They also need instruction about asthma triggers and how to avoid them, and what to do when an attack is beginning.

At we have devoted ourselves to providing parents with resources to learn what they need and want to know about their children. The Web has made it possible for parents to become experts on their children’s conditions.

Published on: November 14, 2003
About the Author
Photo of Alan Greene MD
Dr. Greene is a practicing physician, author, national and international TEDx speaker, and global health advocate. He is a graduate of Princeton University and University of California San Francisco.
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