Pediatricians and nurses at QueensCare Family Clinics are sending families home from checkups with free books and a very important prescription – “read aloud to your children.” Recently, Congressman Xavier Becerra (CA-31) visited the Hollywood site, not only to cheer them on, but to practice what doctors preach by reading to a group of young patients.
QueensCare Family Clinics participate in Reach Out and Read, a program that prepares America’s youngest children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. Reach Out and Read’s medical providers advise parents about the importance of reading aloud and give free books to children at checkups from 6 months to 5 years. The books are new, carefully chosen, and developmentally-appropriate. Through Reach Out and Read, each child starts kindergarten with a home library of up to 10 books and a parent who has heard at every health supervision visit about the importance of books and reading.
“As parents, one of the most important investments we can make in our child’s future is reading with them at a young age,” said Rep. Becerra. “Not only am I happy to be a part of today’s Reach Out and Read event at the QueensCare Family Clinic in Hollywood but I’m encouraged by the partnership that is being strengthened in our community between physicians and families because of this program.”
Dr. Guillermo Diaz, Assistant Chief Medical Officer explains, “From bonding to language acquisition, verbal development and school accomplishments, the many benefits of reading aloud to one’s children cannot be underestimated. As both a pediatrician and as a father, I am acutely aware of the importance of reading aloud to children starting at an early age. It is with this understanding that we at QueensCare Family Clinics are proud to participate in the Reach Out and Read program to promote this vital resource to the children and families we serve.”
For more information on Reach Out and Read please visit www.reachoutandread.org.