Sunday, May 2, 2010

Building the future of your children starts now.

Will he be a doctor or a lawyer? Parents often ponder on the future of their children, perhaps while watching as they sleep, as they tie their first shoes, or simply as they look in their eyes.

Ensuring a bright future for their children is what gave birth to The Dream Builders—a group of mothers who aims to give the best preventive health care for every Filipino.

Together with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), the Dream Builders strives to fight the primary cause of death among Filipino children-- Pneumococcal Diseases or PDs. Launching their campaign No to Crumpled Dreams they will be taking steps in spreading importance of prevention rather than treatment.

“Treatment doesn’t always work but most of the time prevention works. We wanted to take a step forward and prevent this diseases right away.” says Dr. Carmen B. Nievera, member of Dream Builders. “According to our statistics, the number one killer among children is pneumonia, while meningitis and sepsis are included in the top 10. All of these three are common caused by the pneumococcal bacteria. So, we should really prevent this.”

“The launch of our advocacy No to Crumpled Dreams is our way of celebrating with the World Meningitis Day held every year on April 25,” shares Dr. Jing R. Pagcatipunan, Medical Affairs Manager for Vaccines of GSK. “These diseases are very common in children less than 2 years of age and may impair a child’s growth and development. We want to help them out by means of promoting prevention.”

Locally, one out of every three Filipino children diagnosed with invasive pneumococcal diseases (IPD) dies, and these diseases affect mostly children less than 2 years of age. This should be a cause for concern among Filipinos especially mothers.

Nevertheless, mortality is not the only burden associated with PDs. More commonly known as ‘luga’, acute otitis media can actually lead to hearing loss, speech defects and other developmental delays, proving that if not treated, pneumococcal diseases can lead to long-term consequences that are sometimes even more serious than the disease itself.

“Our vision started when we realized that we need to do more than treating diseases. We are taking a step forward in preventing diseases that threaten every child’s future.” ends Dr. Nievera.

FACT SHEET: No To Crumpled Dreams: Protect A Child and Help Build His Dreams Today.

• While it kills 1 million yearly, Pneumoccocal disease is the #1 cause of vaccine-preventable deaths in children under 5 years old.

• In 2002, an estimated 716,000 deaths among children under the age of 5 were attributed to pneumococcal disease.

• Pneumococcal disease ranges from serious, life-threatening diseases such as meningitis, pneumonia, and bacteraemia to less severe, but more commonly diagnosed diseases such as otitis media (middle ear infection), sinusitis, and bronchitis.

• Streptococcus pneumoniae (S. pneumoniae) infection can cause serious, life-threatening pneumococcal diseases and permanent disablilities to children. Children across Asia are still at risk of acquiring these dreadful diseases.

• Middle ear infection or Otitis media ( OM ) is one of the most frequently diagnosed diseases in infants and children which can lead to developmental delays in children. Non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi) and S. pneumoniae are the leading causes of AOM (acute otitis media) in children under five years old.

• Those who survive PD may have an impaired quality of life in the future because of its long-term effects such as learning disabilities, hearing loss, mental retardation, and paralysis.

• S. pneumoniae serotypes 1, 5 and 7F have been associated with high levels of invasiveness, and are causing a significant proportion of severe invasive pneumococcal diseases (IPD) among children, accounting for 5-25% of cases worldwide. These serotypes are more common in Asia, which include the Philippines.

• GSK’s innovative pneumococcal non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi) protein D conjugate vaccine (PhiD-CV) offers broader protection against penumococcal diseases such as meningitis, sepsis, bacteremia, and pneumonia. It substantially reduces the burden of invasive pneumococcal diseases and AOM, offering additional health benefits and cost reductions. To address the need and ensure prevention of the pneumococcal disease, the vaccine was launched ensuring market and financial accessibility.

• The Dream Builders are composed of medical professionals and mothers wanted to put a stop to the spread of these pneumococcal diseases in the country. They work hand in hand with local institutions and GSK in order to spread awareness and proper prevention against PDs in the Philippines.

• “No to Crumpled Dreams” is the first among the many campaigns that The Dream Builders will lead in order to battle these threats against the health of Filipino children.

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