By: Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP, President, American Academy of Pediatrics
"As Hurricane Harvey continues to devastate my hometown of Houston and displace thousands of families across the state of Texas, the American Academy of Pediatrics offers our support and concern to those uprooted by the storm and those whose lives have been lost or compromised as a result of its effects.
"During any disaster, children are uniquely vulnerable - both to the physical threats of the storm and flooding, as well as to the long-term psychological impacts from enduring a traumatizing event. As a pediatrician, I know that children fare best when they are surrounded by loving, nurturing adults, so it's critical that families remain together during rescue and recovery efforts. This includes families of immigrants. We must reassure immigrant communities that our first concern is for their safety and well-being.
"The AAP is working closely with our pediatrician colleagues at the
Texas Pediatric Society, and we remain committed to supporting their needs on the ground as the storm's damage is assessed. Over the past few days here in Houston, I have been awed by the medical community's efforts to ensure that our most vulnerable residents are safe and have access to life-saving services. Together, we will continue to support one another and help the children and families impacted by Hurricane Harvey recover and rebuild their lives."
AAP offers additional information for pediatricians and parents: