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February 1988

Misperceptions About Missing Children-Reply

Am J Dis Child. 1988;142(2):128. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1988.02150020021019

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In Reply.—We thank Dr Schor for his comments and support for our concerns about the anxiety and misperceptions of the missing child issue that has been created through the mass media. These misperceptions have, in part, been created by entrepreneurial interests that have used children for fund-raising events and for marketing new products (eg, Kiddie Alert, a $125, electronic, child-safety monitor that, when the call-button is pushed by the child wearing the device, is supposed to notify the parent that the child is in trouble). In fact, parents and children must have this problem put in perspective. The danger of a child being abducted by a stranger is about as likely as the child being struck by lightning!

We support the significant role that pediatricians could and should play in helping "families to identify unsafe parenting practices." Pediatricians could counsel parents during their regular encounters with parents. Furthermore, when

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