WHEREAS, hydrocephalus is a condition that has no cure, with the primary characteristic being an accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain resulting in abnormal widening of ventricles in the brain, causing harmful pressure which can be fatal if untreated; and
WHEREAS, there are two primary types of hydrocephalus, congenital (present at birth) and acquired (which develops at birth or some point afterward); and
WHEREAS, experts estimate that hydrocephalus affects approximately one million Americans, and roughly one out of every 1,000 babies are born with hydrocephalus; and
WHEREAS, currently, the only treatment for hydrocephalus is the surgical insertion of a shunt system that diverts the flow of cerebrospinal fluid to another area of the body where it can join the normal circulatory process; and
WHEREAS, in 2009, the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution designating the month of September as National Hydrocephalus Awareness Month; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth joins the Virginia Hydrocephalus Association and the National Hydrocephalus Association in conjunction with leaders from professional, community, and medical-based organizations, in increasing public awareness of hydrocephalus and the needs of families, resulting in better health for all individuals;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize September 2018 as HYDROCEPHALUS AWARENESS MONTH and September 1, 2018, as HYDROCEPHALUS AWARENESS DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.