Previous publications and research conferences from the Human Capital Research Collaborative have built support for the argument that early childhood programs strengthen health outcomes and school readiness (University of Minnesota and the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, 2010). The case for promoting investments in early childhood health, however, must be based on strong evidence that such investments will result in specific health benefits to young children, health improvements across the lifespan, and economic returns to society. Recent research shows that the earliest period of life forms the foundation for a healthier life course, and interventions are now available to address the important health problems of early life. Background Children are recognized as the most vulnerable and dependent members of society (Jameson and Wehr, 1993), and measures of infant and child well-being are often used to measure the overall health of a society. Disparities in health and social gradients in health indicators are shaped early in life and sustained across the lifespan (Conley, Strully, and Bennett, 2003). Health is important for many reasons, including the fact that it is a critical determinant of economic productivity across the lifespan; the ability of adults to be productive workers is influenced by their health status.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Health and Education in Early Childhood|
|Subtitle of host publication||Predictors, Interventions, and Policies|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Number of pages||32|
|State||Published - Jan 1 2015|
ASJC Scopus subject areas