Saturday, January 31, 2009

Help Educate Medical Professionals about Down syndrome

from the Down syndrome Information Alliance
If you have a child or grandchild with Down syndrome you probably remember everything about the moment you received the news. For many, it was a painful and negative experience. Well, it doesn't have to be - it shouldn't be.

As a DSIA parent or grandparent you can change the diagnosis experience from one of pain and sorrow to one of acceptance and hope by becoming a Family Sponsor of the DSIA's Hungry for Life Progressive Dinner Party on Monday, May 18, 2009 in midtown Sacramento.

Click here for more information.

90%. Really.

One in 733 babies is born with Down syndrome in the U.S., making it the most common chromosomal abnormality. We don't know the true incidence of Down syndrome because a prenatal diagnosis results in termination 90% of the time.

It's hard to believe, until you look at the facts:

Nearly 25% of physicians in an anonymous survey admit to actively urging or emphasizing the negative information so that parents will terminate a pregnancy. Wertz DC: Georgetown University Press; 2000, 261-87.
81% of medical students say they are not getting any actual clinical training regarding people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics: The health and care of people with intellectual disabilities.
45% of obstetric fellows say that their training on how to deliver a prenatal diagnosis is “barely adequate” or “nonexistent.” Cleary-Goldman: Obstet Gyncol 2006; 107:11-17.
In 2009 a new diagnostic will be available to detect Down syndrome more accurately with a simple blood test in the first trimester of pregnancy, creating an even greater need for the DSIA.

How can you help?

The DSIA is working to expand our hospital outreach program to provide health care professionals with peer education and updated materials so that they can share with new and expectant parents the reality of life with Down syndrome and the tremendous abilities and opportunities our children have. We want new and expectant parents to see videos like the DSIA's Dreams in Reality so that they can be inspired and comforted, rather than terrified and overwhelmed. To view this exceptional short film (about 3 minutes) about local adults with Down syndrome log onto

We know times are tough. But now more than ever we need your help to raise critical funds for this program. As a parent or grandparent of a child with Down syndrome you know what it's like. Please help us make a change.

Each year the DSIA presents "Hungry for Life" a progressive dinner party in Sacramento. Our 2009 event will be on Monday, May 18th in midtown Sacramento, and feature Sacramento's most exclusive restaurants while raising awareness about the abilities and value of people with Down syndrome to change expectations and remove the stigma. This is not your typical banquet fundraiser! There are now awards, no keynote speaker and no auction. Just a great date night!

The DSIA is offering an exclusive sponsorship opportunity for parents and grandparents of children with Down syndrome! For $250 you will receive two tickets to the Hungry for Life 2009 Progressive Dinner Party and a listing in the event program. This is just $50 more than the price of two tickets.

But you must be a parent or grandparent of a child with Down syndrome to qualify for this exclusive sponsorship opportunity. Click here for more information.

Change the life of a baby with Down syndrome.

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