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International Adoption: Infectious Diseases Issues

Laurie C. Miller
Clinical Infectious Diseases
Vol. 40, No. 2 (Jan. 15, 2005), pp. 286-293
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4484059
Page Count: 8
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International Adoption: Infectious Diseases Issues
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Abstract

Nearly 220,000 children have been adopted from other countries by American parents since 1986. Approximately 65,000 children have arrived from China and Russia, mostly in the past 6 years. Most of these children reside in orphanages before adoption, where they may experience malnutrition, environmental deprivation, neglect, and exposure to infectious diseases. After arrival to the United States, international adoptees should undergo specialized screening evaluation for infectious diseases and other conditions. Infectious conditions of special concern include hepatitis B and C, syphilis, human immunodeficiency virus infection, tuberculosis, and presence of intestinal parasites. Before the adoption occurs, the infectious disease consultant may be asked to assist the primary care provider and the adoptive family with advice about travel and review of preadoptive medical records. After the adoption, the infectious diseases consultant may be asked to assess the adequacy of the child's vaccination record from the birth country and to assist in screening, evaluation, and management of infectious diseases.

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