Little Leaps Program featured in State-Journal Register

Hillsboro Area Hospital and SIU Medicine's "Little Leaps" program was featured in the State-Journal Register. Click Here to View Article.

Here's a summary of the Little Leaps program from the article, "SIU med school provides expertise to promote ‘population health.’": "Children and parents in the 'Little Leaps' program in Hillsboro are doing more than having fun. They are taking part in a research project with Southern Illinois University School of Medicine to improve health in ways far removed from a doctor’s examination room. Working with the Springfield-based medical school’s 1-year-old Office of Population Science & Policy, officials in Hillsboro, Decatur, Centralia and other communities that have reached out to SIU are trying to improve the “social determinants of health” of their populations. These factors — which include education, early brain development, family dynamics, poverty, housing and childhood 'trauma' — are part of the physical and emotional environments that studies show have a much greater impact than direct medical care when it comes to a person’s long-term health. SIU is providing the technical expertise needed to design, measure and perpetuate programs the research shows have the best chance of success, according to Dr. Sameer Vohra, a pediatrician who is the office’s executive director. 'This is the way medicine is going,' he said. 'These are the things that are going to make an impact in the next 20 to 30 years in this country,'" (Olsen, 2018).

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