"Address to the Mid-Year Meeting of the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions, Inc.
(NACHRI), Alexandria, Virginia" [Reminiscence]
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Koop, C. Everett
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Congenital Birth Defects and the Medical Rights of Children: The "Baby Doe" Controversy
Address to the Mid-Year Meeting of the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions, Inc. (NACHRI),
Alexandria, Virginia (March 8, 1982)
Vol. 1 -- #17
The Mid-Year Meeting
National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions, Inc. (NACHRI)
March 8, 1982
Although there's nothing in this speech to indicate it, it was given under very difficult personal circumstances. During
the night preceding this address, which took place at eight in the morning, I had been awake for most of the night in an effort
to pass my fourth or fifth ureteral stone with much pain and no apparent accomplishment. I had taken morphine in the middle
of the night that brought me some relief and a little sleep, but just as I was about to leave my home in Georgetown for Alexandria,
the place of the meeting, the ureteral colic started again. I had two choices: cancel the meeting or take some more morphine
and go. I chose the latter and explained briefly to the audience before starting that if I wandered off or said some things
that seemed inappropriate, I had to be excused because I was under very heavy sedation. To the best of my knowledge the speech
was well received and perhaps no one would have known my personal situation had I not mentioned it beforehand.
This speech is important in that it's speaking to the only Association of Children's Hospitals in the United States
and Canada and in it I not only presented the Block Grant proposals of the Reagan Administration of 1981, but also referred
to Healthy People. The government plans every decade for the next one by using the The Report on Disease Prevention and Heath
Promotion, more commonly known as Healthy People, as a reference. I also took this opportunity to introduce to the public
a new coalition: "Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies", which I more or less sheparded for the next several years with
the March of Dimes being the major non-governmental organization involved.