(Little Rock) October 19, 2017 - For the first time in history, the Betty A. Lowe MD Award for outstanding service to children was awarded to children. Beebe students Tyler Duke and Mason Covington received the award for their efforts to prevent vehicular heatstroke in children. The award was presented at the Arkansas Children's Forum, an annual meeting hosted by the Arkansas Children's Foundation.

In 2016, Tyler and Mason invented a device in their Robotics and Engineering class at Beebe Junior High School to prevent hot car deaths in infant and toddlers. Their teacher, Tate Rector, encouraged his students to research and solve a problem. The boys discovered on average 40 children die each year due to vehicular heatstroke.

Moved to action by the national statistics, Tyler and Mason invented the Baby Saver 2000, a device that attaches to any car seat. The device registers weight in the car seat and temperature of the car. Once the car reaches a set temperature, a sensor in the key fob engages the panic button, alerting the owner of the vehicle.

"Innovation is essential in order to leap frog to the next level of care and achieve better health outcomes for children," said Jay Deshpande, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer for Arkansas Children's Hospital. "These young men identified a problem that is a public health issue, discovered an intervention and then worked diligently to find a solution. They are very much deserving of this award."

The Betty A. Lowe MD Award is given biannually to an individual or group who through personal initiative, service and leadership have made a significant contribution to the health and well-being of the children of Arkansas. Dr. Lowe served as the Medical Director of Arkansas Children's Hospital from 1977 to 2001. In 1993, she served as the President of the American Academy of Pediatrics and was the first Arkansas and the second woman in the nation's history to hold this title.

"It's an honor and a privilege to celebrate Dr. Betty Lowe and her legacy to children's health," said Fred Scarborough, president of Arkansas Children's Foundation. "We are thrilled to recognize Tyler and Mason for their dedication to creating a healthier tomorrow for the children of Arkansas. They are truly champions for children."

Arkansas Children's also presented the young inventors with a $10,000 check from the Jonathan M. Bates Center, an endowment created to improve children's health in Arkansas. The funds will be used to present the product to market, providing families around the U.S. with this life-saving technology.

     Past Betty A. Lowe Award recipients include:

  •  2015: Peggy McCall, Miracle League of Arkansas
  •  2014:  Anne Hickman
  •  2013: First Lady Ginger Beebe
  •  2012: Ray Hanley
  •  2011: Sister Joan Pytlik
  •  2010: Bettye Caldwell, PhD
  •  2009:  Robert H. Fiser, Jr., MD
  •  2008: Patrick Casey, MD
  •  2007:  Roger Bost, MD
  •  2006: Betty Bumpers
  •  2003: Patricia Youngdahl, PhD
  •  2002: Amy Rossi

About Arkansas Children’s

Arkansas Children's, Inc. is the only healthcare system in the state solely dedicated to caring for Arkansas' 710,000 children, giving the organization a unique ability to shape the landscape of pediatric care in Arkansas and transform the health of children throughout the region. The private, non-profit organization includes two pediatric hospitals, a pediatric research institute and USDA nutrition center, a philanthropic foundation, a nursery alliance, statewide clinics, and many education and outreach programs.

Arkansas Children’s Hospital (ACH) is a 336-bed, Magnet-recognized facility in Little Rock operating the state’s only Level I pediatric trauma center; the state's only burn center; the state's only Level IV neonatal intensive care unit; the state's only pediatric intensive care unit; the state’s only pediatric surgery program with Level 1 verification from the American College of Surgeons; and the state's only nationally recognized pediatric transport program. Additionally, ACH is nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report in five pediatric subspecialties (2019-2020): Cardiology & Heart Surgery, Nephrology, Neurology & Neurosurgery, Orthopedics and Pulmonology. Arkansas Children’s Northwest (ACNW), the first and only pediatric hospital in the Northwest Arkansas region, opened in Springdale in early 2018. ACNW operates a 24-bed inpatient unit; a surgical unit with five operating rooms; outpatient clinics offering over 20 subspecialties; diagnostic services; imaging capabilities; occupational therapy services; and Northwest Arkansas' only pediatric emergency department, equipped with 30 exam rooms. Generous philanthropic and volunteer engagement has sustained Arkansas Children's since it began as an orphanage in 1912, and today ensures the system can fundamentally transform the health of children in Arkansas and beyond. To learn more, visit archildrens.org.