Subject: Studies in the News 02-51 (September 5, 2002)

Studies in the News
Children and Family Supplement

Contents This Week

Introductory Material HEALTH
   Antidote for allergies
   Unraveling the fetal origins hypothesis
   Maternal employment and child development
   Young children's mental health
   Early child care development and education
   Early childhood and child care
   Child care funding
   Child care subsidy use in Oregon
   Trends in childhood asthma
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in California’s Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Library’s website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • Items in the State Library collection can be checked out to state officials and staff.

  • Access to all materials listed will be provided by the State Information Reference Center, either by e-mail to or by calling 654-0261.

The following studies are currently on hand:



"Exposure to Dogs and Cats in the First Year of Life and Risk of Allergic Sensitization at 6 to 7 Years of Age." By Dennis R. Ownby and others. IN: JAMA: Journal of American Medical Association, vol. 288, no. 8 (August 28, 2002) pp. 963-972.

["Children who live around two or more dogs or cats before their first birthday are less likely to have allergies of any sort, according to a study.... The study is one of the most comprehensive so far to look at the 'hygiene hypothesis' the idea that allergies are increasing because American childhood has gotten too clean." Sacramento Bee (August 28, 2002) A9.]

[Request #S5798]

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“Unraveling the Fetal Origins Hypothesis: Is There Really an Inverse Association Between Birthweight and Subsequent Blood Pressure?” By Rachel Huxley and others. IN: Lancet, vol. 360, no. 9334 (August 31, 2002) pp. 659-665.

[“Fetal undernourishment may not spell doom later…. The rapidly emerging theory that adult health is set to a significant degree before birth, by conditions in the womb, is getting its first major challenge with new research questioning the validity of some evidence supporting the idea…. Scientist conclude that the reported link between low birth weight and higher blood pressure later in life … may not be as strong as previously thought. Because of flaws in the studies, it may not exist at all.” Sacramento Bee (August 30, 2002) A16.]

[Request #S5799]

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"Maternal Employment and Child Cognitive Outcomes in the First Three Years of Life: The NICHD Study of Early Child Care." By Jeanne Brooks-Gunn and others. IN: Child Development, vol. 73, no. 4 (July/August 2002) pp. 1052-1072.

["Maternal employment by the ninth month was found to be linked to lower Bracken School Readiness scores at 36 months, with the effects more pronounced when mothers were working 30 hrs. or more per week.... Although quality of child care, home environment, and maternal sensitivity also mattered, the negative effects of working 30 hours or more per week in the first nine months were still found, even when controlling for child-care quality."]

[Request #S5800]

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Making Dollars Follow Sense: Financing Early Childhood Mental Health Services to Promote Healthy Social and Emotional Development in Young Children. By Kay Johnson and others, National Center for Children in Poverty. (The Center, New York, New York) July 2002. 32 p.

Full Text at:

["This policy paper explores innovative state approaches for financing early childhood mental health services, especially prevention and early intervention programs that help very young children and their families." Connect for Kids (September 4, 2002).]

[Request #S5804]

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“Early Childhood Care? Development? Education?” By the Early Childhood and Family Education Section, United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation. UNESCO Policy Briefs in Early Childhood. No. 1. (The Organization, Paris, France) 2002. 2 p.

Full Text at:

["The ultimate concern of any early childhood programme should be the wellbeing and holistic development of the child, and regardless of the institutional setting, the programme should embody a developmentally appropriate practice, which attends to health, nutrition, security and learning."]

[Request #S5801]

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“Planning for Access: Develop a Data System First.” By the Early Childhood and Family Education Section, Scientific and Cultural Organisation Section, United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation. UNESCO Policy Briefs in Early Childhood. No. 2. (The Organization, Paris, France) 2002. 2 p.

Full Text at:

["More often than not, early childhood policies are developed without the support of sound data.... Addressing the needs requires political awareness followed by specific policy discourse, planning and financial commitment, for which obtaining such an essential policy tool as data is essential."]

[Request #S5802]

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Is What They Said What They Meant? By Federal Funds Information for States. FFIS Issue Brief 02-46. (FFIS, Washington, DC) August 15, 2002. 5 p.

["The Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) contains three separate streams fo federal funds-discretionary funds, mandatory base funds and mandatory matching funds. These funds are supplemented by state matching and maintenance of effort (MOE) funds.... All states would have access to more funds than they did in FY 2002."]

[Request #S5803]

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Continuity and Stability: Dynamics of Child Care Subsidy Use in Oregon. By Robert B. Weber, Linn-Benton Community College and Elizabeth E. Davis, University of Minnesota. (National Center for Children in Poverty, New York, New York) August 2002. 36 p.

Full Text at:

["This study finds that Oregon, along with Maryland, has child care subsidies that are the shortest in duration, and the least stability in family’s child care arrangements." Connect for Kids (September 4, 2002).]

[Request #S5806]

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[The following studies, reports, and documents have been ordered or requested, but have not yet arrived. Requests may be placed, and copies will be provided when the material arrives.]



"Trends in Childhood Asthma: Prevalence, Health Care Utilization, and Mortality." By Lara J. Akinbami and Kenneth C. Schoendorf. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 110, no. 2 (August 2002) pp. 315-322.

["Five data sources from the National Center for Health Statistics were used to describe trends in asthma for children aged 0 to 17 years from 1980 to the most recent year for which data were available. The study found that recent data suggested that the burden from childhood asthma may have recently plateaued after several years of increasing, although additional years of data collection are necessary to confirm a change in trend. It also found that racial and ethnic disparities remain large for asthma health care utilization and mortality."]

[Request #S5807]

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