The Union Recorder

Editorials

April 19, 2014

Baldwin County's participation in the NCS is beneficial

MILLEDGEVILLE — Nearly three years ago Baldwin County earned the distinction of selection for a part of medical research history.

Now a new field office has opened in Baldwin County for the National Children’s Study (NCS), with hopes that one day the knowledge gained from this research will not only aid medicine today but also the medical advances of tomorrow. 

Baldwin is one of just 105 communities selected from across the nation for the research project, which aims to study 100,000 children from pre-conception through age 21 in hopes of drawing valuable insight that can be used to improve children’s health care and medical research.

Along with Baldwin County, only two other communities in Georgia, DeKalb and Fayette counties were selected to take part.

In spring 2011, Emory University joined a national effort to increase understanding of children’s health and development by participating in the NCS. The goal is to improve the health and well-being of children by understanding factors that contribute to their health. Factors such as water, diet, sound, family dynamics, community, cultural influences and genetics will be tracked and examined in an effort to improve children’s health in their environments. 

Perhaps one day the knowledge gained from this research can be applied to medicine so that we can discover ways to treat childhood diseases more effectively, or even change the face of children’s medical treatment.

Now that children and families have been identified and are part of the study, it has moved on to its next phase where data is measured and recorded on all the participants.

It’s quite amazing to think that residents from Baldwin County, women and children, have the opportunity to play such a potentially important role in this type of research. The insight gained through this long-term study could one-day hold the key to eliminating childhood diabetes, cancers or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

More importantly, this effort could quite possibly change for the better how we care for children and fight disease.

Baldwin County’s selection for this study is truly exceptional. The information gained right here in Baldwin County could lead to the next cure to fight disease and save lives — a remarkable part of history of which to be a part.

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