HSCSN wants to make it easy for you to find resources to help you live your best life. You can find out how to manage your conditions, learn about Immunization shot schedules and find community health and family support programs.
DCPS School Year Notifications
- Take Care of Your Teeth # HealthMe. Oral Health affects our ability to speak, smile, eat and show emotions.
- Learn how to Take Care of your Teeth with How to Brush Tips.
Immunizations are shots that help your body fight off diseases. Learn why these shots are so important and how they help prevent your child from getting certain diseases.
Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu shot. The Flu shot can help you prevent the Flu. Other ways to prevent the flu include washing your hands, covering your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, and avoiding contact with sick people.
This Flu season it is likely that Flu viruses will spread along with the new coronavirus (COVID-19). Because of this, it is important to reduce the spread of the Flu virus. Flu vaccines will not prevent COVID-19, but they may reduce the number of people who get sick from the Flu. COVID-19 and the flu share similar symptoms. There are some key differences between the two viruses. For more information, please view the chart in the letter below.
If you have not gotten your Flu shot, it is not too late. HSCSN enrollees can get a Flu shot by visiting their primary care providers. Enrollees over the age of 18 can get free Flu shots at all CVS pharmacies. If you have questions, please contact HSCSN Customer Care at (202) 467-2737 or 1 (866) 937-4549.
American Academy of Pediatrics
Center for Disease Control (CDC)
- CDC – Vaccine Schedule
- Find out when your child should be immunized for different diseases.
- Your Child’s First Vaccines
- Vaccine Information Sheet- DTAP
- Vaccine Information Sheet- Td
- Vaccine Information Sheet- Tdap
- Vaccine Information Sheet- Yellow Fever
CDC - U.S. Growth Charts - See where your child falls in the growth chart
DC Health Matters Connect
Find resources using our search tool!
Here at HSC Health Care System / Health Services for Children with Special Needs, Inc. (HSCSN), we know that there are many factors that affect your health. HSCSN has partnered with DC Health Matters. DC Health Matters is a group of organizations working to better connect families to the resources and healthcare they need. You can find information about food, educational programs, and legal services. Enter your zip code in the box below to start finding resources near you.
As a caregiver, you do many things to help those with health care needs. All that work can put an emotional and physical strain on you. That is why it is important that you also take care of yourself. Learn what you can do to take care of yourself as you care for someone else.
Caregiver Stress (Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health)
Taking Care of You: Self-Care for Family Caregivers (Family Caregiver Alliance)
What Is Caregiver Burnout? (PDF) (American Heart Association)
Back to School Medical Forms
HSCSN wants to help your child get ready for school. Bring all the forms that you need your child's doctor to sign to your next doctor visit.
- Universal health certificate
- Oral health assessment form
- Asthma action plan
- Medication forms
Remember to give all of these forms to your child’s school after your doctor visit. We want to make sure your child is ready to learn.
Help to Quit Smoking
Talk with your care manager if you or your child need help to quit smoking. Find more support from these resources.
- American Lung Association has a free online program to help you quit smoking
- The Lung HelpLine is a toll-free line to get help from tobacco treatment specialists. Call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or 1-800-501-1068 (TTY)
- Breathe DC offers group classes to help quit smoking. Call (202) 574-6789 to learn more
- SmokeFree.gov has free tools and tips to help you quit smoking
- Quitline™ is a toll-free, 24-hour counseling line for free help. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or 202-333-4488 (Spanish)
- QuitStartApp gives teens tips and challenges to become smoke-free
- You can also find community support groups, programs and other resources
Manage Your Condition
Asthma affects a person's breathing. Airways in the lungs, called breathing tubes, swell and narrow, making it harder for air to get through. People with asthma may be extra sensitive to things like smoke, cold air, and exercise. Asthma might be triggered by anything that causes an allergic reaction, such as dust mites or pollen.
- Asthma Health Topic (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish.
- Asthma: Basic Information (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Learning More About Asthma (American Lung Association)
- What Is Asthma? (Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Air and Radiation)
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common brain disorder. The disorder makes it hard for a child to focus and pay attention. Some children may be too active. This is called hyperactive. Hyperactive children might have trouble controlling themselves.
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (National Institute of Mental Health)
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish.
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Children (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
- What Is ADHD? (Nemours Foundation)
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a disorder that people are born with or that happens early in life. It affects the brain and makes interacting with other people (chatting, playing, hanging out, or socializing with others) more difficult.
- Autism (NAMI)
- Autism Self Advocacy Network
- Autism Spectrum Disorder (National Institute of Mental Health)
- Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Parent's Guide to Autism Spectrum Disorder (National Institute of Mental Health) Available in Spanish
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental illness. People who have it go through unusual mood changes. They go from very happy and active (“up”) to very sad, hopeless, and inactive (“down”). It is also called manic-depressive disorder because the “up” period is mania, and the “down” period is depression.
- Bipolar Disorder (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Bipolar Disorder (American Psychiatric Association)
- Bipolar Disorder (NAMI)
- Bipolar Disorder (National Institute of Mental Health) Available in Spanish
Burns & Wounds
Burn can be caused by heat, chemicals, electricity, sunlight, or radiation. There are three types of burns: 1) First-degree burns damage only the outer layer of skin. 2) Second-degree burns damage the outer layer and the layer underneath. 3) Third-degree burns damage or destroy the deepest layer of skin and tissues underneath. 4) Fourth-degree burns reach into the muscle below the skin.
- American Burn Association
- Burns (American College of Emergency Physicians)
- Burns (American Society for Surgery of the Hand)
- JAMA Patient Page: Burn Injuries (American Medical Association) - PDF Available in Spanish
Cancer is a disease caused by cells that are not normal, and that can spread to other parts of the body. There are more than 100 different types of cancer. Most cancers are named for where they start. For example, lung cancer starts in the lung, and breast cancer starts in the breast. The spread of cancer from one part of the body to another is called metastasis.
- Cancer (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Cancer Basics (American Cancer Society) Available in Spanish
- What Is Cancer? (National Cancer Institute) Available in Spanish
Cerebral palsy happens when the parts of the brain that control how a person moves do not develop properly or get damaged. It appears in the first few years of life. People with cerebral palsy may have difficulty walking. They may also have trouble with tasks such as writing or using scissors. Some have other medical conditions, like seizures.
- Cerebral Palsy (March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation) Available in Spanish
- Cerebral Palsy (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
- Facts about Cerebral Palsy (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- United Cerebral Palsy
Contraception (Birth Control)
Contraception is another word for birth control. Birth control helps people plan when they would like to have children. There are many types of birth control, including condoms, pills, and IUDs. Some birth control methods can also lower your risk of HIV and other STDs. Talk to your provider about which birth control method is best for you. If you have any questions or need more information, please contact your Care Manager.
- Teen condom fact sheet (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Available in Spanish
- It's your future. You can protect it. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Long Acting Reversible Contraception (LARC) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Comparing birth control methods (American Sexual Health Association)
- How effective is my birth control? (ContractiveTechnology.org)
COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) makes it hard for people to breathe. The main cause of COPD is exposure to substances that harm the lungs. This is usually cigarette smoke. Air pollution, chemical fumes, or dust can also cause it.
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- COPD: Learn More, Breathe Better (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)
Cystic fibrosis (CF) causes a person’s mucus to be thick and sticky. The mucus clogs the lungs and other organs. It causes breathing problems, lung infections, and lung damage.
- Cystic Fibrosis (American Lung Association)
- Cystic Fibrosis (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)
- Intro to Cystic Fibrosis (Cystic Fibrosis Foundation)
Depression is a brain disease. It is more than just feeling “down.” People with depression may feel sad all the time and lose interest in activities. Depression gets in the way of everyday life.
- Depression (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Depression (American Psychiatric Association)
- Depression (National Institute of Mental Health) Available in Spanish
Developmental disabilities are a group of conditions that cause both physical and mental problems that usually last a lifetime.
- Developmental Disabilities (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- What Are Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDDs)? (National Institute of Child Health and Human Development)
Diabetes happens when the body does not make enough of a hormone called insulin or does not use it the right way. When this happens, your blood glucose, or blood sugar, level gets too high. Type 1 diabetes is when your body does not make any insulin. Type 2 diabetes is when the body either doesn’t make enough insulin or the body ignores it.
- Diabetes (American Diabetes Association)
- Diabetes (American Academy of Family Physicians)
- I Have Diabetes (National Diabetes Education Program) Available in Spanish
- Diabetes (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Available in Spanish
- Diabetes Booklet (HSCSN)
People with Down syndrome are born with an extra copy of chromosome 21. Chromosomes control how a baby’s body forms during pregnancy. Some people with Down syndrome have physical problems, along with developmental disabilities. Every person born with Down syndrome is different.
- Down Syndrome (March of Dimes)
- Down Syndrome (National Institute of Child Health and Human Development) Available in Spanish
- Down Syndrome (For Parents) (Nemours Foundation) Available in Spanish
- Facts about Down Syndrome (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Epilepsy causes a person to have seizures. The seizures happen when nerve cells in the brain send out the wrong signals. This causes a person to feel strange. They may fall and shake or pass out.
- About Epilepsy (Department of Veterans Affairs)
- Epilepsy (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Epilepsy (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
- Epilepsy (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke)
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Fetal alcohol syndrome is caused when a woman drinks alcohol while pregnant. The effects can include physical and behavioral problems.
- Fetal Alcohol Exposure (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism) - PDF Available in Spanish
- Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Information (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It harms the body's immune system cells. That is the part of the body that fights off disease and infections. AIDS, which stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, is the most advanced stage of infection with HIV.
- HIV/AIDS (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)
- HIV/AIDS Basics (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- What Is HIV/AIDS? (AIDS.gov)
Learning disorders affect how a person understands, remembers and uses new information. People with learning disorders may have problems listening or paying attention, speaking, reading or writing, and doing math. Some children with learning disabilities also have ADHD.
- Programs and More (National Center for Learning Disabilities)
- Learning Disabilities (Nemours Foundation)
- Types of Learning Problems (American Academy of Pediatrics)
- Understood (a program for parents from the National Center for Learning Disabilities)
There are many lung diseases that make breathing hard.
- Lung Disease (Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health) Available in Spanish
- Lung Diseases and Conditions (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)
- Lungs and Respiratory System (Nemours Foundation) Available in Spanish
Sickle Cell Anemia
Sickle cell anemia is when the body makes red blood cells that are shaped like a half-moon. They should be round shaped. These sickle cells get stuck in blood vessels and block the flow of the blood. This causes pain and harm to organs in the body.
- Facts about Sickle Cell Disease (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Available in Spanish
- Sickle Cell Disease (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) (National Marrow Donor Program)
Speech & Language Disorders in Children
Many disorders can affect people's ability to speak and communicate. They range from saying sounds incorrectly to being unable to speak or understand speech. Sometimes a delay may be caused by hearing loss. Other times it may be due to a speech or language disorder.
- Delayed Speech or Language Development (Nemours Foundation) Available in Spanish
- Late Blooming or Language Problem? (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association)
- Speech and Language Developmental Milestones (National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders) Available in Spanish
- Speech and Language Impairments (Center for Parent Information and Resources) Available in Spanish
Spina bifida happens during pregnancy. The baby’s spinal cord does not close properly. This harms the brain and spinal cord. Many people with spina bifida need assistive devices, like braces or wheelchairs, and they may have learning problems.
- Parent/Caregiver Guide (Spina Bifida Association of America)
- Spina Bifida (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Spina Bifida (March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation)
- Spina Bifida (For Parents) (Nemours Foundation)
Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury, or TBI, happens when a person has a serious bump or blow to the head. It causes harm to the brain. The problems that TBI can cause are different for each person.