Before we adopted from Russia we attended a 5 week course designed to prepare us for international adoption parenthood. While our social worker educated us from her perspective, having a international adoption doctor educate us based on his experience working with adopted children was priceless. One night the class focused on health concerns of the adopted child.
Children in orphanages could potentially have lice, scabies, exposure to TB, Hep A, rickets, internal parasites, ear infections, eye infections, upper respiratory conditions etc..
We've been asked, will your son be "healthy"? hmmmmm..... By US standards, maybe but maybe not. He could have one or more of the ailments listed above. We will not know our son's complete health picture until we arrive home.
The ailments may sound a little overwhelming but honestly, they are all treatable. The IA doctor recommended taking our adoptive child to a pediatrician within 2 weeks of arriving home for testing. We did that with Igor and we'll do it for BOC (son #2) as well.
If you are in the process of adopting internationally and are seeing the list of ailments for the first time don't freak out. Many adoptive parents, including us, have gone through several of the ailments listed and we/our children made it through treatment. Educate yourself, make sure your pediatrician has worked with IA children or is willing to learn about them. Ask your pediatrician to refer to the "Red Book" for standing testing protocol when you return home with your child.
Our conference call with AWAA was today. Duni confirmed the wait time for toddlers remains at 7-9 months. That's great news for us since we are in month 8! Stay tuned, we may have a referral this month.