Sunday, July 14, 2024

Nicklaus Children’s National Initiative Protects Kids From Tech

Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, in conjunction with the Digital Health Institute for Transformation (DHIT) and several key community partners, has announced the launch of The Digital Safety Alliance and the Safe+Sound initiative. It is designed to aid parents in navigating the complexities of today’s digital age.

Recent studies have revealed a strong correlation between the access children have to the internet and social media, and the rise of depression, suicidal thoughts, eating disorders, addiction, and other serious health risks. It’s become clear that the impact of smartphones, tablets, computers, and gaming devices on children’s mental health and well-being is a growing concern.

As Matthew A. Love, the president and CEO of Nicklaus Children’s Health System, pointed out, “Parents are the first line of defense in setting boundaries for digital device usage. We want them to be informed before deciding when to give their kids a smartphone.”

Thanks to these concerns, the Digital Safety Alliance aims to facilitate collaboration between parents, educators, healthcare professionals, law enforcement and corporate leaders to increase national awareness on this issue. Members of the alliance, including Troomi Wireless, seek to provide parents with vetted resources and best practices to promote digital safeguards and industry standards. In addition, the Safe+Sound initiative includes a wealth of online resources like news articles, blogs, and research studies to keep parents and professionals informed.

According to Dr. Marisa Azaret, director of clinical psychology at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, many children and teens struggle with social media and other digital platforms, craving social rewards like attention and positive feedback from their peers before they are emotionally equipped to deal with them. Responsible parenting now requires a level of tech expertise to protect children from the influence of strangers and inappropriate digital content.

During a press conference, Love emphasized the necessity of safeguarding kids against the mental health hazards of digital devices. It’s clear that we need to address the potential negative effects before it’s too late.

To learn more about the Safe+Sound initiative and the Digital Safety Alliance, visit http://www.nicklauschildrens.org.

Nicklaus Children’s Hospital is South Florida’s only licensed specialty hospital exclusively for children, managing about 850 attending physicians along with over 500 pediatric subspecialists. The hospital has 307 beds and offers numerous specialty programs routinely ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. The hospital offers the largest pediatric teaching program in the Southeastern United States and has been a designated ANCC Magnet facility for the past 17 years.

More information about the Digital Safety Alliance can be found at http://digitalsafetyalliance.org. Nicklaus Children’s Health System is the source of this information.

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