Children's Health
Child Health Research Lags Behind Adults
May 1, 2013 - 12:57:21 PM

( - In a Viewpoint article in JAMA, pediatric leaders call for a renewed commitment to child health research through innovative strategies, unique partnerships, creative use of emerging technologies, enhanced training of child health researchers, a culture of participation in clinical trials, and advocacy for children and child health research. 

The Viewpoint, "The Transformation of Child Health Research: Innovation, Market Failure, and the Public Good" is written by Barbara J. Stoll, MD, the George W. Brumley, Jr. Professor and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics in Emory University School of Medicine and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, and David K. Stevenson, MD, and Paul H. Wise, MD, MPH, from Stanford University School of Medicine. This essay is a response to an editorial published in JAMA in 2012: "Challenges to Excellence in Child Health Research," by Zylke et al. which summarized a series of articles suggesting that the quality and number of pediatric research studies lag behind research focused on adults.

Improving positive outcomes in child health is a necessary step for advancing public health generally, say the authors, but this will depend on elevating the status of children in society and on having the political will to provide adequate financial support. 

Over the past few decades pediatric medicine has realized a remarkable record of accomplishments, including prevention and successful treatment of acute infectious diseases and transforming previously fatal diseases into more manageable chronic conditions, but long-term outcomes are still less than optimal, the authors assert.

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