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May 2016Vol. 17, No. 3Adoption Medicine and the Health of Adopted Children

An article in the National Council for Adoption's Adoption Advocate discusses the importance of adoption medicine to the health and well-being of children who have been adopted. The article defines adoption medicine as a practice that addresses the special health, behavioral, and developmental needs of adopted children. The field's specialists can leverage their expertise to help adoptive families and children throughout the entire adoption process. The article describes how specialists can help families through each stage of adoption, including the following:

  • Preadoption consultations: Specialists can help families understand the lists of medical terms and conditions prospective adoptive parents must review before making a final decision to adopt.
  • Reviewing the adoption file: Specialists can help review a child's adoption file to help families determine the suitability of a particular adoption placement.
  • Postadoption care: Specialists can provide guidance and assistance with issues such as caring for newborns, children adopted from foster care, and children adopted through intercountry adoptions.

The brief also discusses when an adopted child may need to be referred to other specialists (e.g., substance-exposed infants, children with developmental delays), and it includes an appendix with additional resources and materials to help primary care providers care for adopted children.

Access "Adoption Medicine: Improving the Health and Wellbeing of Adopted Children," by Emily Todd, Adoption Advocate, 92, 2016, at