UCP Smart Brief: February

UCP Smart Brief

Disability Update

Children’s skills improve with cell treatment for cerebral palsy
Children with cerebral palsy who received transfusions of donated umbilical cord blood cells as well as erythropoietin and rehabilitation performed better in tests of motor and cognitive function, according to a study in the journal Stem Cells. The most progress was seen in children younger than 3. News.com.au (Australia) (1/31)

Study finds lack of efficacy for psychological, dietary ADHD therapies
A review of 54 studies in the American Journal of Psychiatry showed little evidence that nonpharmacological treatments for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, such as psychological or dietary interventions, can reduce symptoms. Parents should not be discouraged because the findings only “demonstrate that what we once thought worked is more limited and more questionable,” study co-author Dr. Emily Simonoff said. WebMD/HealthDay News (1/30)

Other News

EEOC: Disability-related job bias claims were at record high in 2012
Disability Scoop (1/29)
Bioness’ device gets FDA OK for treating pediatric foot drop
Medscape (free registration) (1/25)
Class-action lawsuit targets lengthy waiting list for group-home placement in Maine
Portland Press Herald (Maine) (1/30)

Assistive Technology

CDC awards $10.2M contract for disabilities research
The CDC awarded RTI International a five-year, $10.2 million contract for research into the causes and prevalence of developmental disabilities, including cerebral palsy. The research will support work by the Developmental Disabilities Branch of the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities. WashingtonTechnology.com (1/28)

Fla. nonprofit offers instruction on iPhone accessibility
The Lighthouse of Broward in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., offers instruction to people who are visually impaired on how to use the iPhone’s accessibility features. The smartphone’s standard features such as navigation, a currency reader and other voice-activated functions make it accessible right out of the box, said Eric Barrette, technology specialist at the Lighthouse of Broward. Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) (1/29)

Transitions

Minn. schools offer varsity sports through adaptive-sports leagues
Minnesota started an adaptive high-school sports league 40 years ago with floor hockey and now has 1,700 participants in four sports where students with disabilities can compete against other schools and earn varsity letters. Some say Minnesota offers a model for other states and districts. Recent guidance from the U.S. Department of Education called for schools to make reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities in school athletics. Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.)/The Associated Press (1/31)

Wash. focuses on addressing effects of “toxic stress”
Washington state is charting a new path for improving educational outcomes for young children who have been exposed to toxic stress, including deprivation, abandonment, abuse and more. Such exposure can affect brain development and a child’s school readiness, researchers say. State agency officials, researchers and educators are working together to launch and monitor pilot programs in early-childhood settings across the state in hopes of developing a national model. Education Week (premium article access compliments of EdWeek.org) (1/30)

Other News

Ga. city builds park with slides, swings adapted for children with disabilities
The Augusta Chronicle (Ga.) (1/30)

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