Understanding the scope of the problem, who is affected, and the implications of survivorship is vital to building programs that support families across the United States. Federal funding is a critical component of our efforts to inform and influence policies that improve conditions for families and strengthen community supports.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot tell Americans or decision-makers just how many parents and family members survive the death of a child. Without this critical data, policymakers, corporate leaders, philanthropists and others cannot prioritize investments; determine the most pressing research priorities; or identify which families are at greatest risk.
Recommendation One: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should conduct an incidence and prevalence analysis to determine how many nuclear family members survive the death of a child, at any age and from any cause, in the United States each year.
Recommendation Two: Following an analysis of prevalence and incidence, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should examine the interrelationships between child death, family income, health, causes of death, and community support systems in order to provide a clear understanding of the problem, enable the research community to monitor and track trends, and ultimately improve outcomes for bereaved families.
National Academies of Sciences
Considered one the nation's most prestigious scientific institutions, the National Academies of Science publishes reports on a range of important issues facing the nation. To date, the National Academies has not authored a report to the nation on the implications of child death on a family, community or nation.
This report will consolidate the current state-of-affairs for bereaved families and the science, programs, and policies that support them. Additionally, it will provide a roadmap for decision-makers and prioritize our nation's most pressing needs to address child death support systems and their architecture in our public, private, and plural institutions.