Children’s Health Initiatives
Hackensack Meridian Health is dedicated to improving the health and well-being of our children. We are happy to be able to spread our message of good health through fun, memorable, and free health education programs by partnering with schools, organizations, camps and members of the community. Learn more about our programs and how we can work together to keep kids healthy, safe and happy.
Pawsitive Action Team
Once upon a time, three special friends- a friendly dog, energetic bunny, and intellectual cat- joined together to form The Pawsitive Action Team. Together they teach children ages three through 10 how to eat healthy, stay safe, be fit and act responsibly. Along with a health educator, Doctor Bernard, Hopscotch or Picatso can be scheduled for your school, youth group or club for a fun and memorable learning experience. The team also makes appearances at community events.
Responsible Behavior with Picatso: Grades K-4: Picatso and a health educator teach children the importance of acting responsible, treating others with respect and help them to understand bullying and what to do if it is happening.
Community of LifeSavers: Hackensack Meridian Health has partnered with the American Heart Association in a landmark initiative to create a community of LifeSavers. When ordinary people are equipped with the skills to perform CPR, survival rates can double or even triple. We are pleased to offer this free training to students in grades five through twelve.
My Healthy Lungs: Did you know asthma is one of the most common chronic disorders in childhood and leading cause of school absenteeism? Designed for students in third through fifth grade, our program teaches the importance of keeping lungs healthy, understanding asthma, the dangers of smoking, and more. Let our nurse educators help you educate your students through fun and creative hands-on activities.
Safe Sitter with CPR: Safe Sitter graduates are prepared with the knowledge they need to stay home safely, care for younger siblings, or babysit. Course content includes Infant and Child CPR, Choking, Injury Prevention and Management, Behavior Management, Safety for the Sitter, Child Care Essentials and Babysitting as a Business. This program is designed for boys and girls ages 11 to 14. Private training sessions can be arranged for groups of 10 or attend one of the many available classes.
Community Outreach for Asthma Care and Health (COACH): Asthma education and assisting “at risk” families meet the needs of their children with asthma are the hallmarks of the C.O.A.C.H. Program (Community Outreach for Asthma Care and Health). We are a team of nurses and community health workers who provide asthma education to providers and patients alike. The focus of this education is to foster compliance with asthma therapies by developing an asthma treatment plan which is doable for the family. At home visits we educate the child and caregivers and assess the home for asthma triggers. We provide items essential for trigger remediation such as; vacuums, dust mite covers, fragrance-free pest control and cleaning products. Case management is provided and assistance with follow-up appointment and referrals to appropriate services.
Additional topics for programs that are offered are: Sleep, Dental Health, Sun/Skin Cancer Prevention, Handwashing, Heart Health, and Poison Prevention.
Nutrition and Physical Activity
Nutrition with Doctor Bernard: Grades Preschool-4: Doctor Bernard and a health educator teach children the importance of staying healthy by eating the right foods, eating the right amount and make sure it’s a balanced meal using MyPlate.
Moving and Grooving with Hopscotch: Grades Preschool-4: Hopscotch and a health educator teach children the importance of keeping your body healthy and strong through physical activity, proper sleep and hygiene.
Injury Prevention Programs
Bike and Helmet Safety: Biking is a wonderful activity for children and also a great form of exercise, but when it comes to hitting the road, safety is top priority. Our trauma coordinators offer a free program to teach students the importance of helmets and bike safety.
Child Passenger Safety Programs: Motor vehicle injuries are a leading cause of death among children in the United States. But many of these deaths can be prevented. We offer free programs such as: interactive booster education programs for kindergartners, provide child passenger safety lectures to any group, and free car seat safety checks at Jersey Shore University Medical Center on the first Tuesday of each month (3 p.m.-7p.m.) in collaboration with the New Jersey State Police.
Drinking and Distracted Driving: Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens according to the CDC. Fortunately, teen motor vehicle tragedies can be decreased. Through public awareness and education, proven strategies can positively impact the safety of young drivers on the road.
Our speaking engagements for high school students aim to prevent distraction related and substance related fatalities and injuries on our roadways. Presenters from the health and law enforcement fields join together with those whose lives have been impacted by a preventable loss to provide best practice measures in the area of drinking, drugged and distracted driving prevention. During this comprehensive experience for teens, stories of loved ones lost are shared to help serve as a reminder that we all are more than just a statistic.
Every driver has the opportunity to ensure safety on the road. A text or phone call is not worth being dead on arrival or changing lives forever by a tragedy. Teen drivers are encouraged to put down their devices and to understand that driving under drug or alcohol influence is deadly driving.
Pedestrian Safety Program: We want to encourage kids to be active, but, before they head out, there are important safety tips we want them to know. We offer a free interactive program for children in kindergarten and first grades that will them to exercise caution at intersections, learn how to properly cross the street at a crosswalk, and master other important walk safe techniques.
Safety with Doctor Bernard: Grades Preschool-4: Doctor Bernard and a health educator teach children how to stay safe and avoid injury, during sports, play time and in your community. They will discuss keeping you safe in a car and while riding a bicycle and scooter, and being prepared for an emergency and calling 911.
Stop the Bleed: Grades 9-12 and professionals: When serious injuries are suffered, the first few minutes immediately following the incident are often the most critical. Minutes, even seconds count, particularly when there is substantial bleeding. Bystanders can have a lasting impact as they are the first on the scene.
STOP THE BLEED is a FREE, nationwide training campaign to teach bystanders life-saving techniques such as how to apply a pressure bandage and use a tourniquet.
If you are interested in this free training and learn how you can save a life for your students or staff, please click here.
Children’s Health Lectures
Let our board- certified physicians, dieticians, and nurses speak at one of your upcoming meetings or events about important health issues affecting children in our communities.
If you are interested in one of these programs, please click here.
We continue to introduce new programs and expand current one ones, please let us know if you have a request for a topic that is not listed.