Want Fewer Adults With Expensive Problems? Catch At-Risk Kids By Age 3, Study Finds
"About 20 percent of the population use the lion's share of public services," says Duke University professor Terrie Moffitt, a senior researcher on a new study that links those high expenses to the health of the subjects' brains all the way back when they were tested at age 3.
Study: Early Support For Children Reaps Big Benefits
The study, released Monday, shows that the services offered by the two North Carolina programs led to an increase in lifetime earnings for the children and their parents. All the children, who were African American and lived in low-income families, received an array of services from birth to age 5, aimed at improving their education, nutrition and health. The study’s authors also linked such programs to a reduction in criminal behavior and improved health outcomes, and noted those benefits were particularly pronounced for males. (Morton, 12/12)
In other news on preventive efforts —
Health Innovator: Patients Who Are Asked About Food, Heat See Medical Benefits
New research out Monday shows that when primary care patients get help attaining basic resources — like food, housing, heat and access to affordable medicines — it leads to improvements in their blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The findings, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, may be intuitive. But they provide further evidence that a Boston-based nonprofit founded 20 years ago by a Harvard undergraduate is on the right track by focusing on patients' "unmet social needs" as a critical pathway toward true health. (Zimmerman, 12/12)