Advancing Children's Health

Well-managed asthma care = active life

Nov 20 2015

More than 23 million Americans have asthma and more than one-quarter are children younger than age 18. In recent years, better ways to diagnose and treat asthma, even in young children, have significantly improved daily life for children living with asthma. With proper medication, severe flare-ups can be minimized – even prevented – and children with well-managed asthma care can lead active lives with minimal restrictions. Dr. Michael Schechter, a pediatric pulmonologist with extensive experience working with children with asthma, shares more about asthma care in today’s world, managing care for a full and active life, and a new community program that can help. What is asthma? Asthma is a condition that affects a person’s breathing. Inside the lungs are airways called... View Article

Controlling those candy cravings – Halloween edition

Oct 29 2015

by Kelli George, Dietetic Intern Reviewed by Ashley Cappel, Registered Dietitian, CHoR’s Healthy Lifestyles Center Quick – name the first three things that come to mind when you think of Halloween! Candy, pumpkins, and……candy. Our kids look forward to Halloween each year because they get to dress up in a fun costume and eat all of the candy they can find within arm’s reach. No one enjoys saying no to their little one, but candy is just, well, not good for us! So when they come home with that plastic pumpkin full of candy, what do we do? Here are a few great tips to get you started: Feed your kids a nice dinner before trick or treating. That way... View Article

Scary fact: 2X more fatal car accidents on Halloween night

Oct 26 2015

It’s a scary fact: Children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than any other day of the year. The fun of this special night often leads to distraction. “Halloween is an exciting time,” Dr. Jeffrey Haynes, Director of CHoR’s Children’s Trauma Center, explains. “When the natural impulse to get quickly to the next treat is coupled with the poor visibility at dusk and later evening, pedestrian safety is at risk.” Halloween should be about frightful fun – not serious scares – and there are several things parents can do to ensure trick or treating is as safe as possible. Top safety tips based on information from Safe Kids Worldwide are... View Article

Simple substitutions and kid-friendly treats
Healthy twists on fall favorites

Scary halloween banana ghost chocolate faces healthy natural snack recipe. Delicious party decoration on vintage wooden background.
Oct 19 2015

by Kelli George, Dietetic Intern Reviewed by Ashley Cappel, Registered Dietitian, CHoR’s Healthy Lifestyles Center With the fall season comes yummy sweets and Halloween treats. Typically, these themed recipes can easily throw your family’s healthy eating habits way off track. But never fear, you can still enjoy your pumpkin apple spiced caramel goodies without suffering from any ghostly guilt for the rest of the day. When you look in all the right places, it is very possible to still enjoy those holiday-themed recipes without breaking away from the healthy food choices your family has already been making. First off, look for simple substitutions that you can make to recipes that are already tried and true to you. Here are some... View Article

UCI Road World Championships come to Richmond Sept. 19-27:
From beginners to elite riders, bike safety matters every time you ride

Bike - blog short
Sep 17 2015

Tomorrow marks the opening ceremony for the UCI Road World Championships in Richmond! The championship bike races will inspire many to get on their own bikes and ride. From beginners just learning to pedal to practiced riders who bike to work or hit bike trails regularly, safety matters at all levels, every time you ride. Safe Kids Virginia Program Coordinator Corri Miller-Hobbs recommends the safe riding tips listed below. Whether you’re overseeing a child’s safety, watching your teen set off for a ride with friends or heading out on your own, be sure you – and your loved ones – follow these important safety precautions at all times. Never ride without a helmet – Helmets should be worn at all... View Article

Supporting your child’s mental health during the school year

Sep 14 2015

From buying new pencils and clothes to packing healthy lunches, much time and energy is spent making sure children are physically prepared for a new school year. However, it is equally important to take the time to ensure children are emotionally prepared as well. Children need to feel safe and emotionally content in school in order to be academically successful. As parents, you can be their strongest advocate to ensure that feeling of security. Below are recommendations from Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist Dr. Bela Sood for ways to help support a child’s mental and emotional health as they transition back to school. Be positive. Help children work through their feelings of worry and nervousness at starting a new school year... View Article

Diabetes education program receives American Diabetes Association recognition

Aug 31 2015

The Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU (CHoR) has received the American Diabetes Association’s (ADA) Education Recognition Certificate for meeting national standards for diabetes self-management education. The prestigious award acknowledges the high-quality diabetes education program that CHoR provides as an essential component of diabetes treatment. “Our team provides comprehensive diabetes education and support from the moment of diagnosis,” said Ellen Dionne, RD, certified diabetes educator at CHoR’s Center for Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism. “We cover everything from teaching children and families about counting carbs and testing blood sugars, to utilizing helpful technology like continuous glucose monitoring systems and insulin pumps.” Achievement of Recognition status means that a program has a team of knowledgeable... View Article

Kids Come First Files:
A caring culture

Aug 21 2015

  The team at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU (CHoR) includes members from all disciplines — from surgery, social work and nursing — to physical therapy, environmental services and child life. While team members fill different roles in the care of children and families, they all have something in common — a desire to make sure that Kids Come First at CHoR. The latest letter from the Kids Come First files is from a military leader who was touched by the team members he and his family interacted with during a recent hospitalization. Letter of appreciation from one leader to another Dr. Rubin, My son was recently treated and operated on by your department. We arrived via ambulance to... View Article

Kids Come First Files:
Care spans across the globe

Aug 18 2015

Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU (CHoR) provides care across Central Virginia, with locations from Stafford to Petersburg, but our caring arms also extend across the globe. While living abroad in China, a local Virginia family found themselves returning to the U.S. to receive a higher level of care and to develop a comprehensive plan to better manage their son’s epilepsy (a brain disorder that causes recurring seizures). Enter Dr. David Jaffe, a board certified pediatric neurologist at CHoR. Dr. Jaffe met with the family and reviewed the child’s electroencephalograms (EEG) that were conducted abroad, adjusted his medications, and developed a plan to monitor his epilepsy from afar so that the family could safely return to their home in China.... View Article

Planning for a Delicious (and Nutritious!) School Year

Aug 5 2015

August is Kids Eat Right Month. Kids Eat Right is a nutrition education, information-sharing and action campaign created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, its Foundation and the Kids Eat Right Program. CHoR Dietitian Mary Henck recommends their informational website,, as a helpful (free!) resource for families and a great resource to check out as you start planning for the new school year. This Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ award-winning website brings consumers the latest science-based nutrition information. The site features resources and tools to help with smart shopping, healthy cooking and eating right, along with innovative tips and recipes specific to childhood ages and stages, from infancy to the teen years. With the first day of school... View Article