Child Health Inequality: Framing a Social Work Response.

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    • Abstract:
      Numerous studies acknowledge that the well-being of our nation hinges on the health of its people.There is specific concern about children because they represent the future. Ignoring children's health needs can compromise their educational preparedness, occupational pursuits, productivity, and longevity. Current science demonstrates that developmental, emotional, or behavioral limitations experienced during the early years of life and over the life course are associated with poor adult health outcomes. Poverty, restricted access to health insurance and health care services, cultural and linguistic barriers, neighborhood conditions, and racial and class inequalities exacerbate poor health outcomes and contribute to child health inequality. To respond to the complexities and threats of child health inequality, social workers must be sensitized to the physical and material constraints that support them and join forces with other disciplines in comprehensive approaches to reduce and prevent them.This article focuses on current knowledge about child health inequality and recommends how social workers can effect change in this area through practice, policy, and research that adheres to the profession's ethical principles and standards and promotes the public health. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]