The Joseph P. Kennedy Foundation has a wonderful booklet available to assist new parents and parents to be understand the scary words that have just been said to them about their child. They don't have to be scary words. And I am glad that there are resources that are being developed to help these parents.
About the booklet.
A little about the organization.
The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation believes that persons with intellectual disabilities have the ability to live, learn, work, recreate, and worship like everyone else. We recognize that people with intellectual disabilities may need assistance to do these things.
We believe that families of people with intellectual disabilities, especially families of children with intellectual disabilities, benefit from support and information to successfully include their family member with mental retardation (intellectual disabilities) in the everyday activities of their community.
The Foundation works to improve the lives of people with intellectual disabilities and to prevent the causes of intellectual disabilities.
- Enhance the quality of life of persons with intellectual disabilities and their families.
- Provide seed funding to capitalize on Federal and/or State or Local spending on behalf of persons with intellectual disabilities and their families by funding initiatives that evolve beyond where existing programs are going, and do not duplicate public efforts.
- Increase professional and public awareness of the needs of persons with intellectual disabilities and their families.
- Work to reduce the incidence of intellectual disabilities.
And the brochure created by this foundation have received kudos and endorsement by prominent physicians. Read about it in this recent press release.
Prominent Physicians and Scholars Endorse the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation's "Understanding a Down Syndrome Diagnosis" at the University of Kentucky's HDI
Prominent physicians and academics nationwide are endorsing the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation's "Understanding a Down Syndrome Diagnosis" as the most balanced material that healthcare providers can provide to expectant parents following a prenatal diagnosis at www.lettercase.org.
Lexington, KY, October 10, 2012 --(PR.com)-- Prominent physicians and scholars nationwide are endorsing the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation's "Understanding a Down Syndrome Diagnosis" as the most balanced material that healthcare providers can give to expectant parents following a prenatal diagnosis. The complete list of physicians and scholars can be found at (www.lettercase.org). The booklet was uniquely prepared in 2010 with assistance from the Down Syndrome Consensus Group, including representatives of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics, the National Society of Genetic Counselors, the National Down Syndrome Congress, and the National Down Syndrome Society.
Dr. Brian Skotko, Co-Director of the Down Syndrome Program at Massachusetts General Hospital states, "When an expectant couple receives a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome, providing accurate, up-to-date, and balanced information about Down syndrome becomes an important and immediate goal."
Dr. Alison Piepmeier, Director of Women's and Gender Studies at the College of Charleston, says, "Learning through prenatal testing that your fetus has Down syndrome can be unexpected, confusing, and difficult for many potential parents. In this booklet, those individuals will receive the most up-to-date information about what having a child with Down syndrome might be like for them as well as discussion of other options - including termination and adoption. Photographs of children with Down syndrome at play allow readers to observe life with the condition. It's a beautifully done book with many resources and a fair and unbiased look at the options most individuals will consider after a diagnosis of Down syndrome. I would recommend this book to any person needing more information about a diagnosis of Down syndrome."
A recent study published by Levis et. al. in the American Journal of Medical Genetics found that the booklet parallels what women who are or may become pregnant said they need to know about Down syndrome, including "clinical information about DS, information about families with a child with DS, the degree of medical complications, resources for parents, among many other topics. The booklet also contains many photographs of children with DS engaging in everyday activities."
"Understanding a Down Syndrome Diagnosis" is administered by the University of Kentucky's Human Development Institute (HDI) and is available at www.lettercase.org as a free digital download. Medical professionals can request a free printed copy up to every two months to share with their patients, and high quality printed copies are also available for public purchase. All proceeds from book sales are used by HDI to continue to support the program.
University of Kentucky Human Development Institute
Stephanie Meredith, Lettercase Program/Medical Outreach Director