Dr’sTips for Choosing a Good Day Care and Keeping Your Kids Healthy Away From Home

For many parents, the decision of where to enroll their child in daycare is difficult. There are many factors to consider, such as ensuring that your child remains in a safe and healthy environment at all times.

Dr. Rosa Tajian, Pediatric ER Physician is sharing a few tips to help parents with asking the right questions and making certain the best practices are used:

Safety

  1. Require proof that the facility and staff are fully licensed and trained– Asking for proof of licensing for the facility and staff is a must. Daycares should be able to provide official documents demonstrating their facility is upholding health and safety requirements. Training on safety policies and emergency measures such as CPR should be ongoing for staff.  It is also important to learn how the staff is screened before hire; does the facility conduct a complete health and background check?
  2. Make sure that the staff to child ratio is adequate– There is safety in numbers. When choosing a daycare knowing how many adults are caring for groups of children is important. There are regulations that stipulate the maximum amount of children allowed per staff member in a daycare setting. To learn the appropriate numbers, a parent can always obtain that information from the New York State Office of Children and Family Services, Division of Childcare Services. It is always good to confirm from time to time that the ratio remains adequate because facilities can lose staff members and not replace them.
  3. Check for smoke and carbon monoxide detectors as well as fire extinguishers –Ensuring that these devices are present and functional reduces the risk for hazards. Each mechanism should be inspected as recommended and documentation of inspection should be presented if required.
  4. Medications and hazardous materials are out of reach– Ask the daycare provider to show you where hazardous substances are kept. They should be locked away and out of reach.

Health

  1. Hand washing policy– Daycares should reinforce strict handwashing policies. Staff should be required to wash hands after changing diapers, before preparing food, after wiping spit up, drool or runny noses.
  2. Sick policy –Find out if there is a strict, written policy for sick kids that all parents must abide by. Organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics provide general guidelines of when children should stay home from daycare or school.  Equally as important is a sick policy for staff. Adults should be asked to go home if they are feeling sick or presenting symptoms that can jeopardize a child’s health.
  3. Cleanliness –The cleanliness of the daycare is extremely important. Ensure that play areas are properly sanitized as well as toys. Areas such as bathrooms and kitchens should be exceptionally clean at all times.   Daycares should exercise a strict cross –contamination policy that prohibits actions such as washing or preparing bottles in the same sink used to wash hands after changing diapers.
  4. Immunization policy –Daycares often require immunization records when a child first enrolls. However, they should also follow up with parents to ensure that subsequent vaccinations are up to date. It is very important for the staff to receive vaccinations for diseases such as pertussis which can be harmful to children’s health.

The Department of Pediatrics at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center provides comprehensive care for children in our community.  Our physicians are highly trained in a wide variety of specialties needed to help children overcome illnesses.  To schedule an appointment with a pediatrician at Jamaica Hospital, please call, 718-206-7001.

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Fall Allergies

Ever ask yourself, “Why are my allergies kicking up, it’s not spring or summer?”  The answer may be that if you are a warmer weather allergy sufferer, you will most likely be sensitive to allergens in the fall too.

While the fall season signals the beginning of cooler temperatures, it can be especially difficult for those who are sensitive to mold and ragweed pollen. If you are one of these people, symptoms such as sneezing, itchy eyes, congestion and headaches can reoccur leaving you feeling miserable.

There are several things you can do to find relief. If symptoms are mild, try the following suggestions which may provide temporary relief:

  • Closing windows and doors at night or whenever ragweed counts are high
  • Trying over the counter remedies such as decongestants or antihistamines
  • Rinsing your eyes with a saline solution
  • Trying nasal irrigation
  • Taking steamy showers
  • Wearing a mask while doing yard work
  • Washing clothes and linens frequently
  • Using air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters
  • Keeping indoor air dry by using a dehumidifier
  • Thoroughly washing your face and hair when you get home

If your symptoms are continuous and affect your ability to carry out routine activities, you should speak with an allergist.  Your allergist will be able to help you identify what triggers your seasonal allergies and provide the best course of treatment to offer relief or stop symptoms.

The Division of Allergy and Immunology at Jamaica Hospital focuses on the diagnosis and long-term treatment of allergic and immunologic conditions. To schedule an appointment with an allergist, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Employee Spotlight Denise Amalfitano

Denise has been with Jamaica Hospital for almost 20 years. She started her career at the hospital as a public affairs representative where she organized community events that promoted health and wellness. These activities took her to local schools, houses of worship and to senior centers where she enjoyed educating people on the benefits of being well informed about their health.

Always looking for ways to increase her knowledge and skills, fifteen years ago Denise was offered the opportunity to work in Emergency Room Registration where she quickly learned all of the facets of her new position. She worked her way up to become supervisor of that department and then on to her current role as the director.  With over 130,000 emergency room registrations every year, it is certainly a challenging position but Denise absolutely loves what she does. She also acts as an Administrator on Duty which is a position with great responsibility at the hospital and also serves as a certified medical interpreter.

Denise grew up in Richmond Hill, New York and graduated from Richmond Hill High School. She is a firm believer in being the best that you can be and in early 2018 she will be completing a dual Master’s program earning both an MBA and an MHA degree.  Denise encourages the members of her staff to also look for ways to better themselves, especially through education.  She is always proud of all the people who started in her department who have gone on to earn degrees, and take on positions with more responsibility.

She is married to her wonderful husband of 17 years and they live in Howard Beach. Together they enjoy traveling to new places, but most of all they enjoy all that New York has to offer. Denise is an only child and family is extremely important to her. Denise believes in giving back to the community. She taught religious instruction for two years at Our Lady of Grace, a large congregation in Howard Beach.

Denise is very proud to tell people that she works at Jamaica Hospital. She feels that patients receive extremely good care and she tells everyone that she meets how wonderful the hospital is. We are very happy to spotlight Denise this month.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Today is Fall Prevention Awareness Day – Learn How to Prevent a Fall

On this day we welcome in one type of fall and at the same time, look to avoid another.

September 22, 2017 is the first day of fall in 2017, but this day also brings attention to National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. This year marks the 10th anniversary of this day of recognition sponsored by the National Council on Aging (NCOA).

Falls are the leading cause of injury-related emergency department visits for older adults. They are a major cause of hip fractures and are responsible for more than half of fatal head injuries.

This year’s Fall Prevention Awareness Day theme is Take a Stand to Prevent Falls. It seeks to unite professionals, older adults, caregivers, and family members to play a part in raising awareness and exercising measures to prevent falls in the older adult population.

The NCOA offers the following fall prevention tips for older adults:

  • Find a good exercise program to build balance, strength and flexibility
  • Ask your healthcare provider to provide you with a fall risk assessment based on your medical history
  • Regularly review your medications to determine if they increase your risk of falling
  • Get your hearing and vision checked annually
  • Keep your home safe by removing hazards and improve lighting conditions
  • Enlist the help and support of family members and neighbors

By providing these tips, Jamaica Hospital hopes everyone has a fall-free fall season.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

September is Pain Awareness Month

Pain Awareness Month was established in 2001 to bring about national recognition to issues related to pain and pain management. It is estimated that approximately 100 million people experience chronic pain. There are many explanations for why a person is experiencing pain and also varying levels of severity. Pain is a warning sign that there is a problem within the body that needs to be addressed. It is well known that pain can be very uncomfortable and can alter a person’s ability to perform normal daily functions.
The most common areas affected are:
• Head and neck pain
• Joints
• Lower back pain
• Sciatic nerve
• Pelvis
• Post-surgical pain
Some causes of these conditions can be caused by arthritic conditions, chemical imbalances, diabetes, poor circulation, entrapped nerves, trauma and cancer.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with a pain specialist at Jamaica Hospital to discuss your condition, please call 718-206-PAIN (7246).

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Could You Be Pregnant? 10 Signs You May Be

A common question many women ask after missing their period is, “could I be pregnant?”  There are early symptoms that you could look out for that may indicate pregnancy. These signs may show up a week or two after you have missed your period and can include:

 

  1. Mood swings
  2. Food aversions
  3. Frequent urination
  4. Spotting and cramping
  5. Constipation
  6. Changes in breasts that may involve swelling or tenderness
  7. Fatigue
  8. Headaches
  9. Back pain
  10. Darkening of nipples

Every woman’s body is unique; therefore, some may experience multiple symptoms or none at all during the early stages of their pregnancies.  If you believe you could be pregnant, it is advised that you see your doctor to confirm the pregnancy.   Once your pregnancy is confirmed, your doctor will discuss a prenatal care plan that is best for you and your baby’s health.

Prenatal care is vital because it improves the chances of a healthy pregnancy.  Women who do not receive prenatal care are three times more likely to have low birthweight babies and are more at risk of having complications caused by pregnancy.

To speak with a doctor about your pregnancy or prenatal care, please schedule an appointment with an OB/GYN at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center by calling 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

The Effects of Smoking on the Skin

Everyone knows that smoking is bad for your health. The skin is one area that smoking has a very noticeable effect and can be seen very easily.
There are thousands of chemicals in tobacco smoke. Some of these can affect the skin’s elasticity which will lead to wrinkles and skin that looks baggy. Smoke also affects oxygenation of the blood which can lead to a change in skin tone and pallor.
Some other effects smoking can have on skin include:
• Psoriasis
• Hair thinning
• Yellow fingers
• Slower wound healing
• Cancerous skin lesions
Quitting smoking can reverse some of the negative effects. This is due to better oxygenation of the blood and also removal of the toxic chemicals from the body.
If you smoke and would like to quit, you can speak to your doctor and see what method would be best for you. Jamaica Hospital provides extensive assistance for people willing to quit smoking.  We offer a free smoking support group every Wednesday, and there is also the availability of one on one sessions, both in person or by phone. More information is available at 718-206-8494.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

National School Backpack Awareness Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks are essential back-to- school items for kids.  They come in different colors, sizes and shapes and most importantly they help children to carry their belongings.  Backpacks are preferred by many in comparison to shoulder bags because when worn correctly, they evenly distribute weight across the body.  However, if worn incorrectly they can cause back pain or injuries and eventually lead to poor posture.

To prevent problems associated with improper backpack use, parents should first purchase a backpack that has the following features:

  • Lightweight
  • Wide and padded straps
  • Multiple compartments
  • Padded back
  • Waist belt
  • Correct size (A backpack should never be wider or longer than your child’s torso).

Practicing these safety tips will further reduce the chance of back pain or injuries caused by backpacks:

  • When packing, heavier items should be placed to the back and center of the backpack. Lighter items should be in front. Sharp objects such as scissors or pencils should be kept away from your child’s back.  Utilizing different compartments can help in distributing weight.
  • Do not over pack. Doctors recommend that children should not carry backpacks that weigh more than 10-15% of their body weight.
  • Ensure that children use both straps. Using a single strap can cause muscle strain.
  • Adjust the straps so that the backpack fits closely to your child’s back and sits two inches above the waist. This ensures comfort and proper weight distribution.
  • Encourage children to use their lockers or desks throughout the day to drop off heavy books.

The Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America recommends that parents should always look for warning signs that indicate backpacks may be too heavy. If your child struggles to put on and take off the backpack, they are complaining of numbness or tingling or if there are red strap marks on their shoulders -It may be time for you to lighten their load.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

 

Ovarian cancer is one of the most serious cancers affecting women. In the United States, an estimated 22,000 women will be diagnosed every year with this disease and approximately 14,250 will die because of it.  This type of cancer usually affects women who are in their fifties and sixties, and who typically have a family history of the disease. When the disease is detected early, the five year survival rate is approximately 92%.

Symptoms of ovarian cancer are:

• Bloating
• Nausea, indigestion, gas, and constipation
• Abdominal and pelvic pain
• Fatigue
• Backaches
• Frequent Urination with urgency

When a physician suspects ovarian cancer, they will perform certain tests to confirm the diagnosis. The exam will include a blood test for the CA-125 genetic marker, an examination of the abdomen to see if there is tenderness, a pelvic exam, ultrasound, and a biopsy.

There are four main stages of ovarian cancer:

. Stage I – completely confined to one or both ovaries.
. Stage II – Found in one or both ovaries with spread to other pelvic organs (bladder, colon, rectum, uterus).
. Stage III – Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and has spread to the lining of the abdomen and/or the lymph nodes.
. Stage IV – Most advanced stage of the disease with spread to additional organs such as liver and lung.

Treatment options for ovarian cancer include chemotherapy, surgical removal of the affected organ(s), hormone therapy, and radiation. The type of treatment will be determined by the type of ovarian cancer, the age of the patient, and the stage of the disease.

Remember that early detection is important and just may save your life. All women should  see their OB/GYN once a year for a pelvic exam. If you would like to make an appointment at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Women’s Health Center, please call 718-291-3276.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

What are the Symptoms and Risk Factors of Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers that affect men living in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2017 alone there will be about 161,360 new cases of prostate cancer and 26,730 deaths caused by the disease.

It is important for men to know if they are risk for developing prostate cancer. Risk factors for the disease include:

Age – The chance of developing prostate cancer increases after the age of 50
Race/ethnicity- Prostate cancer occurs more in men of African American and African Caribbean ancestry
Family History- Men with a family history of the disease are more likely to develop prostate cancer
While prostate cancer usually does not present symptoms until its later stages, it is also important for men to know the symptoms. Symptoms include:

Difficulty urinating
Frequent urination
Pain or burning during urination
Painful ejaculation
Blood in urine or semen
Difficulty emptying the bladder completely
Pain in the hip, pelvis or back that does not go away
If you are at risk of developing prostate cancer or are experiencing symptoms, it is recommended that you speak with your doctor as soon as possible. He or she may suggest that you receive testing to find out if you have the disease or to assess the severity of your condition. If you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, there are several treatment options available. Your doctor will discuss which treatment is best based on the advancement of the disease.

To schedule an appointment with a doctor a Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.