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APA Focus
The Official Newsletter of the Academic Pediatric Association

Volume 51, Issue 5 October 2014
Communications Director's Message

Digital Health: A Role for the APA?

I recently had the opportunity to speak at a public workshop held by the Institute of Medicine Roundtable on the Promotion of Health Equity and the Elimination of Health Disparities. The title of the workshop was "Digital Health Strategies, Health Disparities, and Health Equity: The Promises and Perils of Technology." The focus of the workshop was how we can use technology to engage communities, particularly those experiencing health disparities, in a way that improves access to care and promotes positive health outcomes. The week before the IOM meeting, I sat in the offices of Elsevier Publications discussing planning for the Academic Pediatrics journal and, of course, digital strategy came up. These two meetings reminded me of why I wanted to serve as Communication Director for the APA - to move our organization towards becoming a leader in using Internet 2.0 to engage with our members, to support medical education and to better serve children and families. That seems like a pretty tall order but, in some ways, I think we are already on that road. When I look at the online community that I am a part of, I see my fellow APA members leading the way. We are #tweetiatricians talking about #meded and #hcsm and #disparities and #childhealth.

This is my formal invitation for you to join the #tweetiatrician movement in the APA. Get online and be a part of the discussion - or just listen and learn until you are ready to jump in. But I also want you to join me in taking a step offline to work with the APA leadership on building our digital health strategy. Over the next several months, I would like to bring together APA members who are interested in becoming part of our digital health team. Starting in the New Year, this group will begin discussing where we need to go as an organization and how we plan to get there. If you are interested, please let me know by sending an email to with the subject "APA Digital Health Strategy. I'm in!"

Ivor Horn
Communications Director

Academic Pediatric Association

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President's Message

Mark I am delighted to announce that the APA has received a large new 5-year partnership grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It aims to enhance education, awareness, and strength of HPV vaccine (and other vaccine) implementation
recommendations for providers, including those who train primary care residents across the US. We are one of only four national organizations to receive this 5-year award. Peter Szilagyi and Cindy Rand are co-PIs for this initiative. Through direct outreach and education, as well as practice-based quality-improvement interventions, the project will increase the number of providers trained to offer strong patient recommendations for the HPV vaccine, increase peer communication about HPV vaccination, and increase provider awareness and use of CDC resources to raise immunization rates. The project has four strategies: (1) Perform clinician outreach and training by creating an HPV Expert Panel of speakers (who will give grand rounds and other talks) and coordinating with APA Special Interest Groups (SIGs), Region Chairs, and other organizations to provide clinician education, raise awareness, and train providers to offer strong immunization recommendations and optimize immunization delivery in practice settings nationally, particularly for HPV vaccination; (2) Disseminate educational materials to clinicians using CDC materials about vaccine communication and methods to enhance vaccination delivery by capitalizing upon a variety of APA platforms; (3) Partner with multiple national organizations and several APA SIGs to improve training in HPV vaccine communication for residents and healthcare providers who work in primary care settings; and (4) Perform evidence-based quality improvement interventions within primary care practices to increase HPV vaccination rates in 65 primary care practices in Year 1 (15 academic, 50 community), and create a template for practice change to be used by practices across the US. For the fourth strategy, the APA is delighted to be working with both our own Continuity Research Network (CORNET, a national practice-based research network composed of pediatric resident continuity practices) to recruit and partner with the academic sites and also the National Improvement Partnership Network (NIPN, a network of over 20 states that have developed Improvement Partnerships to advance quality and transform healthcare for children and their families) for the community sites. The grant provides funding for APA and CORNET infrastructure. We are excited to begin working on this important project.

Mark A. Schuster

Academic Pediatric Association

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Past President's Message

David Keller Voting Always Matters.

Summer is over, and we are now entering the voting season. As you read this, you should have received (electronically) the APA ballot, which once again features superb candidates for a variety of positions on the APA Board and Nominating Committee. Choosing between them is difficult, but vote we must- it is our obligation as members. Our sister organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics, is also holding its annual election- many of us have the opportunity to vote there are well. The lawns I ride by on my way home from work are sprouting lawn signs, urging me to vote for or against a variety of candidates for local, State and Federal office. Voting is in the air, and yet, in most of these elections, most of us will choose not to vote. What is that about?

The social scientists tell us that people don't vote when they believe that their vote doesn't count, when they don't feel qualified to have an opinion and some people don't vote when they have too many other things to do. None of these have ever stopped me from voting. I have voted for candidates I knew were going to lose (in 1980, for example, I recall casting a vote for John Anderson for President). I've certainly voted on things on which I had insufficient knowledge (does anyone really understand a bond issue?) and I have voted on days that were incredibly busy (even as a resident in Los Angeles). Why do I vote? And why do so many people choose not to vote?

For me, voting is not about winning or perfect knowledge or something I do when I have the time. Voting is part of the covenant of democracy, which says to me that I am part of the process and my vote is a sign of my commitment- to my Association, to my State and to my country. Every time I vote, a little bit of me is embedded in the fabric of society. "Building one more link on the chain, on the chain," as a great folk artist once sang. If we all do it together, then we can build something wonderful.

The APA believes in the power of voting. Our Public Policy and Advocacy Committee is once again inviting our members to engage in the "Prescription to Vote" campaign, working with their clinic populations to help the voice of our patients be heard at the ballot box. Not telling them who to vote for, mind you, but telling them to get out there and vote. And we (your Board) urge of all of you in the APA to vote early in our current election. The best person will win, because ALL of the candidates are superb. But it is better is they win with a turnout of 100%.

P.S. Haven't forgotten about Policy Scholars- but the details are taking me a bit longer to flesh out than I had hoped. Next time.

David Keller
Immediate Past President

Academic Pediatric Association

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APA New Members

Welcome to all of the new APA Members!

Shereen Alavian
Brittany Barger
Jessica Beavers
Tania Caballero
Caitlin Canfield
Steven Chan
Marko Culjat
Adrienne Davis
Blair Dickinson
Tim Dribin
Maya Eady
Kofi Essel
Andrea Evans
Michael Hall
Elena Huang
Takaharu Karube
Oriaku Kas-Osoka
Adrian Lavery
Lois Lee
Grace Lim
Susan Lipsett
Dawn Magnusson
Megan Maraynes
Jessica Markham
Rita Nathawad
Lauren O'Connell
Janet Semple-Hess
Theresa Serra
Michelle Solomon
Heather Souders
Katie Tran
Meta van den Heuvel
Jason Yaun

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Upcoming Conferences

APA Regional Meetings

APA Region IX and X
Naval Post Graduate School
Monterey, California
January 31 & February 1, 2015
Click here for more infomation.

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Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) 2015
PAS 2015

Pediatric Academic Societies 2015
San Diego, CA
April 25-28, 2015

Leadership Conference 2015
Leadership 2015

Leadership Conference 2015
July 22-23, 2015
Marriott Rivercenter
San Antonio, TX

Pediatric Hospital Medicine (PHM) 2015

Pediatric Hospital Medicine 2015
July 23-26, 2015
Marriott Rivercenter
San Antonio, TX

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  • Educational Scholars Program
    APA's Educational Scholars Program (ESP) will be recruiting scholars for a new ESP cohort, to begin in May 2016. Since 2006, the ESP has enrolled 122 scholars. Of these, 63 have so far earned a Certificate of Excellence in Educational Scholarship. A total of 41 scholars are currently active in the program. The ESP curriculum includes full-day teaching sessions, which scholars attend yearly for 3 years at the PAS meetings, and educational modules to be completed between PAS meetings. Each scholar develops an educator portfolio and receives expert feedback on it. Finally, scholars must plan and conduct a mentored, scholarly project in education. To receive a Certificate of Excellence in Educational Scholarship, each must provide evidence of a successfully peer reviewed presentation or publication related to the project. For more information on the ESP curriculum and activities, go to: The application website will open on July 1, 2015. Before that time, think about who among your network might be interested in enrolling in the ESP, and send them the URL above to obtain more information. If you are interested in applying yourself, now is a good time to be settling on a project topic and finding a mentor for your application. For questions about the program, contact Christen Brown (APA Staff):; or Connie Baldwin (Director):

  • PEEAC meeting
    COMSEP, APPD, APA and CoPS jointly sponsor the Pediatric Educational Excellence Across the Continuum meeting. The leaders from these organizations have begun discussions on the next PEEAC meeting, its venue and its meeting dates. This is a forum for pediatric educators to present their work and develop their skills in educational strategies, program management and leadership. Stay tuned for more

  • Educational Guidelines Project
    The Educational Guidelines Working Group in collaboration with the Education Committee solicited volunteers to update or build new resource lists for the Educational Guidelines in over 70 topic areas. Over 100 APA members and 25 COMSEP members responded to the call and began the activity of identifying new resources and linking them to the Milestones. The section editors (Erica Chung, Karen Smith, Jennifer DiPace, Brian Lurie, Shelley Collins, Daniel Neuspiel, Tai Lockspeiser and Caroline Paul) thank all of you who have contributed resources. The quality of the resources has been excellent. If you are interested in contributing new resources for the APA Educational Guidelines please contact Dr Joseph Gigante via email:

  • Residents as Teachers project
    The Residents as Teachers website development is progressing. The APA web developers have created website database for the curriculum and search functions. The group is in the process of developing the landing page for the website for user friendly navigation. We will be adding curriculums next and conducting alpha and beta testing of the site. We will be using the next APPD and COMSEP meetings to call for unpublished high quality curricula and evaluations. The website will serve as a clearinghouse for RAT curricula that have been reviewed by the committee and annotated to allow for programs and individuals to search and customize curricula that would best fit their needs. In addition, the website will also provide consultation for programs that would like assistance in building and/or revamping their resident as teacher curriculum. Those who are interested in submitting your curricula or in helping with this project, please contact Steve Paik at

  • Academic General Pediatrics Accreditation
    On May 1, 2014, the inaugural APA Pediatric Academic Generalist Fellows Conference was held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The theme of the conference was: "Building a Strong Foundation for a Productive Academic Career." The inaugural plenary speaker was Peter Szilagyi, MD, MPH who gave an inspirational and heartfelt discussion on "Achieving Academic Success." Almost seventy percent of APA accredited programs, who have one or more fellows, were represented at the session. Fellowship program directors from half of all the accredited programs were also represented and convened separately during the meeting to discuss future directions to enhance networking and value added opportunities among the accredited programs and methods of assessing the skills of Academic General Pediatric Fellows in training. This group also discussed ideas to reach out to the broader community of academic general pediatrics regardless of a programs accreditation status.

    The SIG session at PAS 2014 was well-attended and focused on EPAs, MMIs, and RAT curricula (Entrustable Professional Activities, Min-Medical Interviews, and Resident as Teacher curricula.) As Fall approaches, we are thinking toward selecting themes for our PAS 2015 session in San Diego. The SIG has recruited two new SIG co-chairs- Beth Goodman and Mary Rocha. Contact for details or

  • APA Poverty Task Force Education Subcommittee
    The Epidemiology, Biomedical Influences, Social Determinants and Leadership & Taking Action workgroups of the APA Poverty Task Force Education sub-committee have been busy creating educational activities to align with recently created goals and objectives. This group of energetic educators is dedicated to developing a child poverty curriculum to train the next generation of physicians about the impact of poverty and their role in addressing it's impact.

APA Teaching Awards for Faculty
The APA Education Committee is pleased to announce the 2015 Teaching Awards for Faculty, one for junior faculty and one for mid-level faculty. These national awards have been created to recognize excellence in teaching. The awards will be presented at the annual PAS meeting in 2015.

Excellence will be judged by assessing not only quantity of teaching activities but also quality of teaching and engagement in a broader education community. The nomination committee will use criteria drawn from the AAMC's Toolkit for Evaluating Educators to guide their assessment of candidates. Look for the Call for Application with additional details about the submission packet. As we begin the 2014-2015 academic year, please encourage a worthy colleague to apply for the 2015 APA Teaching Award, and join the Education Committee in supporting APA's rich tradition of acknowledging the accomplishments of its members and of rewarding excellence.

APA Teaching Award for Educational Programs
This award is given out to diverse and innovative teaching programs around the country each year. The purpose of the award is to foster interest in the teaching of general pediatrics by demonstrating excellence in educational teaching methods, acceptance by students and/or residents, acceptance by the community and the institution, innovations and adaptability, and outstanding quality of the individuals trained in the program. To view a list of previous programs that have received this prestigious award, go to:

The call for applications will go out soon and applications will be accepted through November 14, 2014

Latha Chandran
Education Committee Chair

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Public Policy and Advocacy

It's that time again-the peak of election season when political fervor is visible from debates to yard signs and op-eds to attack ads. Our opinions and beliefs are our own to express, publicly or privately, but they will be measured by a single definitive action-our vote. The APA takes seriously the necessity to advocate for children and child health. With that, we support you to take advantage of your civic responsibility to vote and also encourage your patients to vote and be engaged in the health of their communities.

Now on the website, Rx to Vote materials are once again available for your clinic and for sharing with your patients. You will find Rx's in English and Spanish, as well as Rx's for teens/young adults. There are ballots for children, and we!ve also made available links to posters for your practice and templates for "I voted for KIDS today!" stickers produced by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Every vote makes a difference! We hope you will offer these materials in your clinical setting and encourage patients, colleagues, friends and families to get out and vote.

Shale Wong
Public Policy and Advocacy Committee Chair

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Core Activities

Now in our 14th year, CORNET is a unique organization of continuity clinic directors and preceptors conducting national research in resident education and care of underserved pediatric populations. We have several papers in the pipeline.

New Projects

National Immunization Partnership with the APA (NIPA)
CORNET is very excited to be working with our parent organization APA on a new 5-year partnership grant from the CDC designed to enhance HPV immunization delivery. The APA will be working with CORNET and the National Improvement Partnership Network (NIPN) to perform evidence-based QI interventions within primary care practices. The goal is to increase HPV vaccination rates in 65 primary care practices in Year 1 and create a template for practice change that can be used across the United States.

We will keep our membership updated as we prepare to launch the project and recruit participants. Stay tuned!

Potential Funding for New Project
The MCH has announced that it will soon be opening two R40 competitions. If you have been thinking about a project that you want to work on with CORNET, this might be a good opportunity. We will send updates when the FOA (funding opportunity announcement) is available. In the meantime, please start working on your proposal so we can get it vetted!

  • R40 MCH Research (MCHR) Program supports applied research relating to maternal and child health services, using research designs that allow for strong causal inference such as Randomized Controlled Trials (RCTs), and that have the potential to improve health services and delivery of care for maternal and child health populations.
  • R40 MCH Secondary Data Analysis Studies (SDAS) Program supports applied empirical research relating to maternal and child health services, that utilizes exclusively the secondary analysis of existing national databases and/or administrative records. These projects should have the potential to improve health services and delivery of care for maternal and child health populations.

Leadership Opportunities in CORNET
As you may have already seen, the Continuity Research Network has reached a time of transition. The founding Director of CORNET, Jan Serwint, is stepping down, and the APA is initiating an active search for the next network director. This is an opportunity to direct cutting edge research and to have an effect on the national research agenda.

A description of the position was distributed on the listserv earlier this month. We would love to have nominations including self-nominations for this position. Interested candidates should submit a letter of interest and CV to Nui Dhepyasuwan at The position is open to MD, PhD or EdD members of the Academic Pediatrics Association. Candidates from underrepresented minority groups are encouraged to apply.

Please submit your letter by November 15, 2014

In addition we are still seeking APA CORNET members from Region X to serve as the regional research chair and as a member of the CORNET Executive Committee. Region X represents CORNET members from Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Northern California, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming, Alberta and British Colombia.

Ongoing Projects
We continue to work rigorously with the 13 CORNET sites participating in the National Partnership for Adolescent Immunization (NPAI) QI Project as we are in the midst of Year 3 of the grant. So far we have been really impressed by the efforts from staff at each of the sites, who have been implementing changes and process improvements in their practices throughout the year to enhance the delivery of adolescent immunizations and the incorporation of pediatric residents in the process. At this state we are really in the thick of things - producing data run charts, creating clinical process flow maps, and conducting the monthly learning collaborative calls. We hope that as a result of participating in this project, clinicians, residents and clinic staff will learn skills for evaluating clinic processes and identifying where barriers exist in the quality improvement process. Thanks to all the sites that are contributing to this project!

Submitted By
CORNET Steering Committee

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Educational Scholars Program


The Educational Scholars Program (ESP) was created by the APA Education Committee and the Faculty Development SIG in 2006. Sixty-three scholars have graduated with a Certificate of Excellence in Educational Scholarship, and we currently have 41 active scholars. We will be recruiting a new cohort of 24 scholars in Summer 2015 (see more below).

When planning the ESP, we developed a set of Guiding Principles, which are based on evidence-based techniques for sound education: a central focus on scholarship in education, application of the principles of adult learning, creation of opportunities for extensive peer interactions and practical applications of learning in the context of scholarly projects, creation of professional networks with mentors and peers to further the future careers of scholars, and use of an evolving, dynamic curriculum that is modified yearly through scholars' evaluation and feedback.

In keeping with the last principle, we have recently revised our ESP curriculum in response to scholars' suggestions. We now have an established sequence of activities for all cohorts, so everyone experiences the curriculum in the same order. We have also modified our intersession modules (self-directed learning activities between PAS meetings), so they better match scholars' needs and the curricular themes of the year.

Didactic and Interactive ActivitiesIntersession Modules
  • Introduction to the ESP
  • Educational Scholarship
  • Developing a Scholarly Project
ISM 1A: Refining and Evaluating an Educational Project
ISM 1B: Using a scholarly approach to build an Educator Portfolio (EP)
  • Quantitative Research Methods
  • Qualitative Research Methods
ISM 2A: Reviewing and Referencing the Literature
ISM 2B: Technology for Education
  • Presentations and workshops
  • Publications
  • Leadership self-assessment
  • Networking
  • Becoming a mentor
ISM 3A: Author Development
ISM 3B: Reviewing Manuscripts

In addition to these learning activities, scholars conduct projects in educational research, innovation, or evaluation; meet regularly in small groups to discuss their scholarly projects; create and refine an educator portfolio; and formally review PAS presentations.

The Educational Scholars Program (ESP) will be recruiting a new cohort of scholars next summer. Cohort 8 will begin in May 2016. Briefly, our program includes three full-day teaching sessions, which scholars attend over 3 years at the PAS meetings, and 2 educational modules per year are completed between PAS meetings. All scholars develop an educator portfolio and receive expert feedback to help them plan their careers and maximize their chances for promotion. Finally, scholars plan and conduct a mentored, scholarly project in education. To receive a Certificate of Excellence in Educational Scholarship, each must provide evidence of a successfully peer reviewed publication or presentation related to the project. All program requirements have been selected with an eye to career advancement of young educators.

For more information on the ESP curriculum and other program activities, go to For more information, contact contact Christen Brown (APA Staff):; or Connie Baldwin (Director):

Submitted by
Connie Baldwin
Educational Scholars Program Chair

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Task Forces
Childhood Poverty

APA Task Force on Childhood Poverty Subcommittee on Immigrant Child Health

The APA Task Force on Childhood Poverty had long planned a third Subcommittee (in addition to Health Care Delivery and Medical Education), and formally started the Subcommittee on Immigrant Child Health in late spring 2014. Fernando Mendoza from Stanford and Benard Dreyer agreed to be the co-chairs.

Members, in addition to Benard Dreyer and Fernando Mendoza, include:
Alan Shapiro, Alex Foster, Alice Kuo, Arthur Fierman, Blanca Garcia, Christopher Raab, Claire McCarthy, Danielle Laraque, David Keller, Elena Fuentes-Afflick, Elizabeth Hanson, Fatima Gutierrez, Glenn Flores, Gloria Perez, Janine Young, Jose Manuel Delarosa, Judy Palfrey, Lisa Ayoub-Rodriguez, Lisa Matos, Maida Galvez, Marcia Griffin, Mark Schuster, Mary McCord, Mary Rimsza, Michelle Brane, Michelle Ratau, Moira Szilagyi, Nusheen Ameenuddin, Paul Chung, Rachel Gross, Rashmi Shetgiri, Ricky Choi, Ryan Van Ramshorst, Sandra Braganza, Sarah Polk, Shale Wong, Steve Federico, Woodie Kessel.

The purpose of the Task Force was to focus on immigrant children in two major areas as well as develop an action plan:

  • General Issues
  • Unaccompanied Immigrant Children Crossing Our Borders
  • Action Plan

  • General Issues

    One-fourth of all US children are immigrants or children of immigrants. In states like California, half or all children are immigrants, but immigrant children are living in many communities all over the country. They have specific issues that we as pediatricians need to help them with and we should advocate for the individual children we care for as well as for governmental changes.
    • Health insurance: Immigrant children and children in immigrant families are much more likely to be uninsured. For Mexican and Central American children, the rate is over 20%. There are many reasons for this increased rate of being uninsured, including undocumented status, fear on the part of undocumented parents to accept benefits for their citizen children, and the fact that many states are not taking the CHIPRA (the Children's Health Insurance Reauthorization Act) option to insure legal immigrant children in the first 5 years of living in the US. We as pediatricians can help individual families get health insurance benefits for their children. And we need to advocate to our state governments to insure legal immigrant children and pregnant women through CHIPRA. We in the APA Task Force support the AAP policy that advocates for health insurance coverage for every child living in the US, regardless of immigration status!
    • Poverty: Immigrant families are more likely to be poor than families with US-born parents. 30% of immigrant families are poor vs. 19% of families with US-born parents. For Mexican and Central American immigrant families, the poverty rate is almost 40%. And immigrant families qualify for fewer safety-net programs such as SNAP (food stamps), compounding the stress of their low-wages. When we see these families in our practices, we need to screen for food-insecurity, and help them get any safety-net benefits they qualify for.
    • Poorer Educational Outcomes: Immigrant children who are dual-language learners do much more poorly in school than English-language learners. We need to advocate for universal preschool and affordable high quality child care for all poor and low-income families, including immigrant families, as well as the adoption of effective educational practices for dual-language learners in school systems.
    • Support the DREAM Act: Children brought here by their families who are undocumented and who have spent their childhood here deserve our support. The DREAM Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act) would allow children who were brought here and have graduated from high school without criminal records to stay here for at least 2 years without deportation, apply for work permits, obtain drivers licenses, go to college, and on completion of college or military service have a pathway to citizenship. President Obama issued an executive order to help these children called Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals, which we strongly support.
    • AAP Policy on Providing Care for Immigrant, Migrant, and Border Children: The Council on Community Pediatrics published a policy statement on the care of immigrant children in May 2013 which is an excellent source of information and recommendations regarding both health care and advocacy for immigrant children. Every pediatrician should read this excellent resource on the AAP website or in Pediatrics.

  • Unaccompanied Immigrant Children Crossing Our Borders

    Tens of thousands of unaccompanied immigrant children are crossing our southern borders, fleeing from violence in the Central American countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. You can read stories in the newspapers of the takeover of large parts of these countries by gang violence leading to increasing murder of children (murder rates of children have been going up each month) as well as children being forced into gangs or seeing their close friends or relatives gruesomely killed. The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (TVPRA), which passed the Senate and House unanimously, protects them from immediate deportation and guarantees them a hearing in court. This is not true for children or families crossing coming from Mexico. These children are being processed by the US Customs and Border Protection agents and handed over to the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). ORR is setting up shelters and contracting with agencies to run them across the entire US. There are 3,000 of these children in New York City alone and Drs. Dreyer, Shapiro, Fierman, and Galvez have been involved with pediatricians, lawyers, shelters, and agencies caring for them.

    The Task Force's position on this crisis and need for action includes:
    • This is a humanitarian crisis, not an immigration crisis: We should be advocating for their rights, their care and their safety. The majority of these children are fleeing violence and are afraid to return to their countries for fear of violence and death. Of course many of these children have family in the US and some are coming here primarily to try to reunite with parents. While many of these children are teenage boys 14/17 years of age, an increasing number of girls and young children are crossing our borders.
    • They need adequate legal representation: No child should have to go to court alone! While the TVPRA act guarantees them a day in court, it forbids government funds for legal representation. They need better access to lawyers and we need to advocate for training, support and coordination of pro bono legal services that is integrated into their ORR stay as well as follow-up once they are placed with family or foster care. Lawyers are often asked to prepare the case for court in a week or two. This is inadequate time to prepare a case and we should be advocating for at least a month before hearings are scheduled, with exceptions for continuances as needed.
    • These children should be granted refugee status: Refugee status is granted to immigrants fearing danger due to race, nationality, religion, political opinion or social group membership. Therefore the federal government frequently states that these children don't qualify for asylum because they don't fit into one of these categories. However "social group membership" is a term which certainly can describe these children regarding their position related to gangs. Children may also qualify for asylum based on abuse and abandonment by their family.
    • Mental health services are critical: Many of these children are suffering from PTSD, depression and other mental health problems. Access to mental health services, for some during their stay in ORR shelters, and many others after they are released to family, friends or foster care, is critically important.
    • Educational issues need our attention: Many of these children are entering school systems across the country this fall. They are all mono-lingual Spanish and some even primarily speak an indigenous language. Most of the older children have not gone to school after the age of 12. They all qualify for a free public education in this country. However, school districts may be stressed by the needs of this group of children. Some have tried, illegally, to turn them away. Pediatricians should be reaching out to school districts to open up discussions about how best to provide an appropriate educational experience for these children.
    • Organized follow-up is important: At present, there is little organized follow-up of these children once they leave the ORR shelters. Clearly the mental health and educational issues they face occur after they leave the shelters. And many of these children are being taken in by parents or extended family and friends whom they haven't seen for many years, (often since they were toddlers) or whom they have never known. Placements, therefore, don't always work out, and the teenagers, especially, may become homeless, prey to traffickers, or exploited as workers. Pediatricians should to work with social service agencies and other non-profits to provide a safety-net.

  • Action Plan
    The action plan of the Task Force Subcommittee on Immigrant Child Health has focused on the concerns of unaccompanied immigrant children and developed the following actions:
    • Submitted a workshop of the problems and care of unaccompanied immigrant children to PAS for the 2015 meeting.
    • Worked with AAP National office to develop a webinar to educate pediatricians about the problems of these children and resources to help them better care for these children.
    • Brought the voice of pediatricians on the border to the conversation at regional and national level
    • Worked locally in the New York City area to marshal health, legal, mental health, and educational resources for these children
    • Advocated for allocation of AAP endowment funds to help in this humanitarian crisis.
    • Reached out to advocates for immigrant families to collaborate on these efforts like Women's Refugee Commission, Children's Defense Fund, the NYC Immigration Coalition, Catholic Charities, and others.
    • Worked with the NYC Department of Health to develop an information sheet on the needs of unaccompanied immigrant children once they are placed with sponsors, which will be shared with all APA members
    • Advocating for local and state funding for the legal representation of these children when they have their deportation hearings.

Submitted by
Benard P. Dreyer

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Global Health

Canadian Paediatric Society Endorses APA Faculty Competencies for Global Health

In September 2014 the Canadian Paediatric Society endorsed the APA Faculty Competencies for Global Health. These competencies were drafted by the APA Global Health Task Force, comprised of representatives from the Academic Pediatric Association, the Association of Pediatric Program Directors, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Canadian Paediatric Society, and the Programme for Global Pediatric Research. The Faculty Competencies for Global Health were also endorsed by the APA Board of Directors, the Section on International Child Health of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Canadian Paediatric Society Global Child and Youth Section, and the Programme for Global Pediatric Research. The Faculty Competencies for Global Health are available at (click here).

Ruth A. Etzel
Global Health Task Force Chair

Academic Pediatric Association

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Region I

Greetings Region I Members!

Here in New Haven, the first orange and yellow leaves are appearing on East Rock Park and in the neighborhoods around Yale. Throughout New England and the Maritimes, the mornings are crisper, slower to start, and better for a run before children get on the bus. Across the region, there is a lot of exciting news:

Site and Date Announced for 2015 APA Region I Meeting

We are happy to announce that the meeting with be in the Boston area, on Monday, March 16th. This date is placed strategically to allow trainees and other presenters to hone their presentations for the spring meetings, including the Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting.

Though our region is compact, we realize Boston is geographically closer for some region members than others. This year marks the beginning of a planned every-other-year rotation, with odd years in the Boston area and even years in central New England. Stay tuned for more information about the meeting, including the exciting announcement of its specific location.

Educational Scholars Program Region I Spotlight

With this newsletter we are beginning an occasional feature in which we will highlight current and past scholars from the APA Educational Scholars Program (ESP). Of note, the ESP application process for the next cohort of scholars is ending October 1. Junior faculty members with a commitment to education and educational scholarship are strongly encouraged to consider the ESP as a learning modality, source of mentorship and incubator for collaboration. This newsletter we are featuring ESP Cohort III Scholar Priya Garg, MD, the director of the pediatrics residency at Tufts/Floating Hospital for Children. Below she recounts the value of the ESP for her career and in developing her project.

In 2009, I applied to the APA Educational Scholars Program (ESP). I was a new junior faculty member at the Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center who had recently completed a chief year and was interested in advancing my knowledge and skills around educational research and educational scholarship. I arrived at Tufts having left my educational mentors looking to learn from new mentors and eager to start on an educational project. I had begun a new role as Co-Clerkship director and pediatric hospitalist.

I wanted to focus my educational scholarship and project around an area that intersected my academic and professional interests. I began brainstorming about skills that I observed medical students performing every day and realized that clinical reasoning and oral presentations were two areas that I was interested in learning more about and improving. Since I was working with 3rd, 4th year medical students and interns I began to think about the transition from 4th year to internship and the opportunity available to develop and deliver a clinical reasoning curriculum to improve 4th year medical student oral presentations.

I brainstormed the idea with my residency mentor Dr. Carol Carraccio and wrote my first educational research proposal. After many edits and extremely helpful feedback from Carol, I submitted my application and project "Improving 4th Year Medical Student Oral Presentations through a Clinical Reasoning Curriculum". At the same time, Tufts University School of Medicine had a call for applications for an institutional grant called Innovations In Education. I was fortunate to have been awarded the grant at the same time I was accepted to the ESP program.

I distinctly remember the first APA ESP meeting I attended in May 2009. My ESP mentor Jeff Sperring, MD emailed me in advance and met me for coffee before the first ESP meeting. He had a wealth of knowledge, not only around educational research, but also around career development and advancing as an educator and hospitalist. My cohort was a cohort of hospitalist so ESP gave me an opportunity both to network as an educator and hospitalist. Today, I continue to see many of my cohort colleagues at national meetings including Pediatric Academic Societies, Association of Pediatric Program Directors (APPD) and Pediatric Hospital Medicine.

I was able to complete my project in 2 years. In the first year, I created a clinical reasoning curriculum with exercises that could be facilitated by a faculty member. During the study period, which took place in the second year, I randomized 4th year medical students by alternating blocks to the clinical reasoning curriculum or standard education. The students' oral presentations were scored twice monthly for the year using an oral case presentation tool created at the University of Maryland. The scores were compared for each group and differences were measured. This project was presented as a poster at PAS and as a workshop at APPD in 2013.

This project and ESP were an amazing learning experience much beyond that of simply learning educational research skills. The mentorship, friendships and lessons learned through the process have been invaluable to my career development and a wonderful way of showing how to advance your educational scholarship and knowledge without obtaining an additional degree.

As Dr. Garg makes evident, the Educational Scholars program is a fantastic opportunity for clinician educators to learn and develop their skills.

Research Scholars Program Region I Spotlight

Ever innovative, the APA launched a second scholars program two years ago. The Research Scholars Program (RSP) has this mission statement:

"The mission of the APA Research Scholars Program is to assist pediatric clinician-educators and clinician-researchers in developing themselves as fulfilled faculty members engaged in important and exciting research and to increase the quality and breadth of child health research."

Thus far there are two cohorts of the RSP, and members of both cohorts reside within our region. We would like to spotlight the work of JoAnna Leyenaar, also a Tufts faculty member.

JoAnna Leyenaar, MD, MPH is a pediatric hospitalist and Assistant Professor at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, MA. In 2013, she joined the inaugural cohort of the APA Research Scholar's Program (RSP), with research focused on hospital-to-home transitions of care for pediatric patients. Her project, titled, "Nothing about me without me, incorporating families perspectives in the discharge record" applies qualitative research and Delphi methods to identify and priorities issues that should be discussed with families prior to their discharge from hospital. JoAnna's application of novel research methods in this project was awarded a Methods Grant from the Tufts Clinical and Translational Science Institute, providing valuable resources for study implementation.

JoAnna's interest in hospital-to-home transitions was born out of her experience in the Value in Inpatient Pediatrics Transitions of Care Collaborative. Tufts Medical Center was one of almost 20 pediatric hospital medicine programs that participated in the Collaborative, which provided opportunities to better understand how hospital discharge procedures can impact patient outcomes. JoAnna, with colleagues at Tufts, received an institutional grant to improve discharge communication with primary care providers and to collect baseline data about families' discharge experiences. This research directly inspired JoAnna's Research Scholar's project.

The Research Scholar's Program has provided invaluable structure and mentorship to improve all aspects of the project, from design to implementation. Monthly webinars provide opportunities for feedback from peers and accomplished research mentors, and one-on-one national mentorship is another benefit of RSP participation. The program accepts a new cohort of scholars annually, with a new call for applicants expected in fall 2014.

The RSP leadership includes Benard Dreyer, Alan Mendelsohn, and Bill Cooper.

We are looking forward to the rest of the Fall, and abstract submission season.

Till next time.

Region Co-Chairs:
Mark Cicero

Alison Holmes

Matthew Sadof

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Region III

We will be holding a combined meeting with Region II on March 6, 2015 at the Children's Hospital at Montefiore in the Bronx. We look forward to seeing you there! Invitations for abstracts for this regional meeting will be posted to the Listserv in the next month.

Region Co-Chairs:
Cynthia Rand

Deepa Sekhar

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Region IV

The Region IV APA meeting in beautiful Charlottesville, VA is scheduled for February 21st and 22nd at the Omni Hotel. We will start the meeting on Saturday at 11:30am and finish at noon on Sunday. The planning committee is hard at work organizing another successful meeting, building on past years' successes. For those who have attended in the past, we hope you plan to attend again this year and ask you to bring a friend, mentee, or mentor this year. For those who have not come in the past, you are missing one of the best networking opportunities with your regional colleagues and we hope you will consider coming this year.

Tentative Agenda:

Saturday 2/21
Registration opens 11:30am
ePoster and Platform Presentations
Keynote Speaker TBD
SIG Breakouts + Workshops
Finish by 5:30 in time for dinner on your own
There are great dining options within walking distance of the Omni:

Sunday 2/22
Meet the Professors Breakfast at 7:30am
Regional Updates
Legislative update from Bob Hall (AAP lobbyist)
Business Meeting and Wrap-Up by noon

Start thinking now about potential abstract submissions for poster or platform presentations! This is a great format for "test-driving" work you plan to submit to PAS or expanding the reach of work previously presented locally. Trainee posters of all levels are welcome. Have an idea for a Workshop or Special Interest Group discussion? Please contact Carl Seashore (Region IV co-chair) or John Harrington (meeting co-chair) if you'd like to lead a group. Is there a professor at your center with wisdom to share? Let us know and we will ask them to host a table at the Meet the Professor breakfast on Sunday.

If you are new to our region, or you are a veteran, we hope you will join us in Charlottesville in February!!

Region Co-Chairs:
Linda Fu

Carl Seashore

Megan Tschudy

2015 Planning Committee:
Cliff Lee
John Harrington
Kate Connor
Melissa Long
Parvathi Kumar

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Region V

Greetings Region V. Hope everyone is enjoying these remaining warm weather days. I am so happy to have football back. The fall has already started with a bang. We held our first Region V Quarterly Webinar, Social Media and Medical Professional: How I Tweeted My Way Out of Pediatrics, on September 22 featuring Mike McKenna, MD, from Riley Hospital for Children. There were several of the region's residency programs participating in the broadcast webinar during their noon conference and there was great discussion in many of the programs about professionalism and social media. Kudos and thanks to Mike for providing an outstanding webinar conference. The slides are now available on the Region Wiki page. Our second webinar will take place in January and feature Andrew Garner, MD, who will be leading a webinar on Toxic Stress. If you have ideas for future webinars, please let us know.

We have decided on a date for the Annual Region V Meeting. This year's meeting will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio on February 27-28, 2015. In the coming month we will be sending out a call for trainee abstracts, as well as volunteers to review the abstracts. We are again excited to offer complimentary registration to all trainees whose abstract is accepted, as well as cash prizes for the top abstracts for both categories of research/quality improvement abstracts and case report abstracts. Please let us know if you would be interested in presenting, or if you know of topics and speakers that you think would be good for the Regional Meeting.

Finally, we would like to highlight Region Members who have won awards or have been recognized for significant career events. This month we would like to acknowledge Robert Kahn, M.D., M.P.H., who is currently a Professor of Pediatrics at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, where he serves as Associate Chair for Community Health. The Section on Epidemiology/Council on Community Pediatrics of the American Academy of Pediatrics named Robert for an Outstanding Achievement Award. This award recognizes pediatricians who have made outstanding contributions toward advocating for children and child health in the community through the effective use of epidemiologic information. The award will be given at the AAP NCE in San Diego. Congratulations to Robert!!! Please let us know if you or one of your colleagues has recently been honored, as we would love to publicize our Region member's achievements.

Please contact us with any questions about the Region or upcoming activities (including any suggestions for future topics at our events).

Region Co-Chairs:
Merrilee Cox

Chris Peltier

Jawad Javed

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Region VI

We had a great Regional Meeting at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center on September 19th. The evening before the meeting, twenty of our members were able to attend a Cardinals Baseball game.  It was a great networking event in a relaxing environment.  The meeting was attended by about 55-60 members from St. Louis University, University of Missouri, University of Iowa, Mayo Clinic, University of Nebraska, Kansas City Children’s  Mercy and Washington University St. Louis.  Our full day meeting was filled of talks from  renowned speakers, interactive workshops, a panel discussion and a poster session. The meeting started with a special Grand Rounds presentation by David Keller, MD of Children’s Hospital Colorado on Medical Homes and the Affordable Care Act.  Then, Tim Fete MD of University of Missouri Children’s Hospital conducted a workshop on Collaborations with short presentations from different speakers followed by breakout sessions.  The next workshop was conducted by Robert Wilmott, of Saint Louis University, on Manuscript writing. Lunch followed with a concurrent trainee poster session.  Awards were given to the two top abstracts.  After lunch, several of our speakers led a Leadership Panel Discussion and answered a variety of questions in a very wise and honest way.  Kadriye Lewis, EdD, of Children’s Mercy Kansas City then talked to us about e-Learning in Medical Education. The meeting concluded with two short presentations. The first was by M Susan Heaney, MD, of Saint Louis University on CORNET and the second was an APA update by David Keller, MD.  The meeting was attended by a great mix of faculty and trainees.  It was at opportunity to network and learn from each other.  The Region VI Co-Chairs were so happy with the response that they have already started to think about the next regional meeting.

Reminder about New Initiatives this Year:

Institutional Liaisons - To increase information exchange and member involvement, institutional liaisons will be re-instituted this year. These are individuals who would agree to represent their institution through regular interactions with the Region VI co-chairs. Liaisons are self-nominated or institution-determined and serve for 3 years.  

Duties would include:

  • Representing their academic institution as the "Go To" person, that the Region VI co-chairs could approach, to ask for member help with projects or requests from the national APA office.
    • Providing information about member activities/achievements at their institution such as awards and projects.
    • Assist with promotion of regional and national activities including membership, identifying volunteers for committees, projects, etc.

Please consider becoming an institutional liaison. If you are interested in this position, please contact the co-chairs. Trainee poster mentoring at the PAS - volunteers will be sought year round, and we will coordinate the effort in March to match mentors with Region VI trainees presenting posters at the PAS. Instructions and a handout on how to help mentor the trainees will be provided from the national office. Please let the co-chairs know if you are interested.

Upcoming Important Dates

  • Original science submission deadline for PAS - usually mid-November
  • PAS in San Diego - April 25-28, 2015

The Region Spotlight
You'll remember that we have reinstituted a section for highlighting more regional or institutional news. You'll see below some of the great work our members have been doing in the last few months. So don't be shy to contribute your own information or look around and see who else at your institution you can shine the spotlight on. Information can be submitted at any time for inclusion in the next newsletter

University of Iowa Child Protection Program hired a new program coordinator, Haili Messer, BA. Haili will be instrumental in carrying out the outpatient clinical services provided by the program to a “trauma informed care” level. With her addition, the clinical team consisting of Resmiye Oral, MD, Anne Hartson, ARNP are looking forward to conducting better trauma screening, resiliency building, motivational interview implementation, and navigating families through the system to obtain the services they need to break the intergenerational cycle of childhood adversity.

Anita Moonjely, MD, was named Medical Director at the Iowa River Landing location (main location) for the Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at the University of Iowa. Anita is looking forward to the challenges and opportunities with her new position.    

Jerry Woodhead, MD, has stepped down from his position as Division Director of the Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at the University of Iowa. He will continue his clinical practice as well as serving as  Past President of  COMSEP.'s turned 10 years old on September 30, 2014!  Since 2004, A Pediatric Digital Library and Learning Collaboratory ( has offered a weekly case on a general question. Currently there are more than 460 cases including differential diagnoses about all age groups, specialties, diseases and problems. These cases have aggregated into a curriculum of pediatric    learning and curriculum maps for medical students, residents and fellows are also available. Donna D’Alessandro, MD Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Iowa is one of the curators

Robert Jacobson, MD received a grant for $100,000 from the Mayo Clinic Center for Clinical and Translational Science to study the implementation of HPV vaccination in our school-located vaccination clinics. In the first year we will conduct qualitative research to better understand both facilitators and barriers to implementation. Efforts will include direct observation of this year’s school-located vaccination clinic operations as well as structured interviews with key informants and focus groups with parents of school-aged children

 Dr. Doug Carlson, founding Director of the Division of Pediatric Hospitalist Medicine at the Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine, will be leaving on September 26, 2014, to assume his exciting new responsibilities as Professor and Chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine and Medical Director of St. John’s Children’s Hospital.

Other Important Information
Newsletter items can be submitted to the national office or the regional co-chairs at anytime. Nominations for regional co-chair - nominate yourself or someone else at anytime by contacting the region co-chairs.
Nominations for awards - please look at the nominations as they come out later this summer and fall and nominate yourself or a colleague or program.

Region Co-Chairs:
Matthew Broom

Donna D'Alessandro

Anita Moonjely

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Region IX & X

The APA Joint Region IX and X Meeting, the Pediatric CARE (Community, Advocacy, Research and Education) Conference, will be on January 31 & February 1, 2015 in Monterey, California at the Naval Post Graduate School.

There are 3 opportunities to participate and present:

Topics considered for presentation can be in the areas of community pediatrics, child advocacy, basic or clinical sciences research, health services research, or medical education. Faculty development workshops will be presented on the second day of the conference. Please abide by a 2,600 character limit (excluding authors and Title) for all submissions.

  • Workshop (Sunday February 1, 2015): Workshop proposals for consideration should also follow PAS submission guidelines. Submissions should include a program overview, workshop format, interactive learning strategies employed, and learning objectives. Please submit online (cut and paste the following into your web browser):
  • Research/Scholarship Presentation (Saturday January 31): Abstracts should use a structured abstract format, such as the standard PAS format (Background, Objective, Methods, Results, Conclusion). Please submit online (cut and paste the following into your web browser):
  • Works in Progress (Saturday January 31): We will again include a "Works in Progress" poster session for residents/fellows who would like feedback from faculty on their projects that are still in process. Abstracts should use the format: timeline, target audience, goals and objectives, activities (completed and planned), planned outcomes measures and a key question on which you would like input. Please submit online (cut and paste the following into your web browser):

If the first author is a current pediatric resident, please indicate the year of training next to the resident's name. Residents and fellows are strongly encouraged to work with their faculty mentors on their abstract submissions.

Residents or fellows who present posters or platform presentations at the Pediatric CARE Conference will be eligible for 2-3 travel stipend awards to the 2015 PAS Meeting in San Diego, California to present at our Regional Breakfast meeting.

The workshop and abstract deadline this year is November 11, 2014.

Region IX Co-Chairs:
Gina French

Larry Yin

Region X Co-Chairs:
Mandy Allison

Dean Sidelinger

Tamara D. Simon

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Special Interest Groups

Dear Ethics SIG members,

We hope your summer has been fabulous and you are enjoying the beautiful fall!!

We have two announcements for you in this newsletter.

First of all we are thrilled to announce our new co-director Dr. Adrian Lavery. Adrian Lavery, MD, MPH, received his Master's in Public Health in Law and Ethics from Boston University where he studied under George Annas. He then went on to medical school in Virginia, residency and chief residency at the Medical University of South Carolina and then fellowship in Neonatology at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. He has always had an interest in ethics throughout his medical training and is particularly interested in end of life care with respect to futility and allocation of resources. He is currently the Neonatology Fellowship Program Director at Loma Linda Children's Hospital in Southern California. Adrian is an excellent educator with great ideas. We look forward to a productive collaboration with Adrian.

Our second announcement is the fourth annual APA-ethics SIG essay contest. Please click here for more information.

As we have already started to plan for next year we would love to hear any ideas/topics that you would like to be presented. In this way we can plan our next session according to your needs%wishes.

We will keep in touch via our newsletter and we will continue to be a platform sharing our views and concerns about the impacts of ethics in our clinical work, research and teaching.

SIG Co-Chairs:
Adrian Lavery

Diane Plantz

Zeynep Salih

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Evidence-Based Pediatrics

We received our evaluations from our annual SIG meeting and were pleased with both the good response rate and the high marks.

Of the 28 attending our program at PAS in Vancouver on Monday morning, May 5, 2014, 22 completed the evaluations.

The program received an overall rating of 3.91 on a 1 through 4 point scale and the same rating for relevance and utility. For the four other categories-meeting the objectives and description, time for discussion, use of AV materials, and use of session time-the program earned ratings of 3.81 each. 21 of 22 found the program free of commercial bias and expressed plans to attend future programs.

The comments were all positive. Respondents singled out and praised our guest speaker, Vancouverite James McCormack-famed for his educational YouTube parodies of pop songs. Regarding the program as a whole, one wrote, "One of the most valuable sessions I attend each year." While respondents encouraged us to continue the current style of programming that we have adopted in recent years, several pointed out how much they appreciated both the videos as well as the interactive table-top demonstrations.

We will post materials from the SIG on our web pages at for members to view. Meanwhile, please consider both topics and speakers for our program in 2015 April 25 to 28 in San Diego, California.

Please contact the co-chairs Rachel Boykan at or Bob Jacobson at with your suggestions for the upcoming meeting.

SIG Co-Chairs:
Rachel Boykan

Robert M Jacobson

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Medical Student Education

Greetings from the Medical Student Education SIG! As Fall approaches, we are thinking toward PAS 2015 in San Diego. Please email us with your ideas for themes to include in our 2015 session. As a reminder, our session last year focused on EPAs, MMIs, and RAT curricula. (Entrustable Professional Activities, Min-Medical Interviews, and Resident as Teacher curricula.)

SIG Co-Chairs:
Lavjay Butani

Elizabeth Goodman

Michele Long

Mary E Rocha

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Newborn Nursery

Happy Fall!

Our meeting in May 2014 in Vancouver was a huge success! Thanks to those who came to the meeting. We learned a lot from our Hot Topics speaker, Karen Puopolo, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. Dr. Puopolo spoke about the latest approaches to neonatal sepsis. Abhay Dandekar, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at UCSF, spoke about the newborn curriculum at Kaiser for residents and medical students, and shared a number of resources. On the Newborn Nursery SIG Wiki, you can find copies of their PowerPoint presentations and resident checklists used at Kaiser Oakland. We also had terrific posters, and time to discuss business. A small group will be leading a SIG paper that relates to the role of the newborn hospitalist. We thanked Dr. Beth Simpson for her 3 years of service as our SIG Co-Chair, and we announced the new Co-Chair, Dr. Mary Ann LoFrumento!

We are starting to plan the SIG meeting for the next PAS meeting so if you have any suggestions for speakers, we are hoping to follow a similar format to last year. For the 2015 meeting, we would like to have a keynote speaker talk about a research and/or clinical topic, and we would also like to have someone come to speak about a quality improvement project at their hospital.

Please be sure to visit our Newborn Nursery SIG Wiki: We have created five major sections: Meeting Agenda and Materials, Clinical, Quality Improvement, Education and Research. If you pose a question to the list serve, please summarize the responses and post them to the Wiki. Thanks to those who responded to the questions about marijuana and breastfeeding; for a summary of responses, please visit the Wiki! Please feel free to send questions, concerns or speaker suggestions to Mary Ann or Esther (

Thank you!

SIG Co-Chairs:
Esther Chung

Mary Ann LoFrumento

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Dear APA colleagues,

Understandably, the focus of nutrition research and advocacy over the last decade has been control of the obesity epidemic. We want to engage or re-engage APA members with an interest in nutrition in its totality. This could be in curriculum, metabolism, evaluation, intervention and advocacy. Please click here to put your short comment on area of personal interest and email to

SIG Chair:
Robert Karp

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Patient and Family Centered Care

Hello from the APA PFCC SIG! We are looking forward to PAS 2015 in San Diego. This year's theme is focused on: "PFCC- strengthen the center" which demonstrates ways to promote more effective patient, family and provider participation in patient and family centered care by:

  • Patient and Family Development - showcase programs that actively train families to be excellent in their roles - examples of various orientation and teaching strategies used to promote family involvement.
  • Provider development - showcase programs that have systems in place to train various providers in PFCC and PFCR.

Last year we created a new system to try and ensure the most effective leadership and continuity for our SIG.

We have created a staggered system of 3 year terms for co-chairs to promote continuity. Co-chairs will spend their first year as "chair-elect", 2nd year as "active chair", and 3rd year as "past-chair". Of course the 3 will be an active team all years but this can promote continuity and initial training for new chairs.

Last year was the start of our new system so the leadership team included:

Kristin Voos as chair-elect

The team of Heather Toth, Nena Osorio and Mike Weisgerber as active chairs

And no past chairs

This year Kristin Voos will be the active chair with the team of Heather, Nena, and Mike as past chairs.

So we need a new chair-elect'

We wanted to solicit interest from the members of the PFCC SIG. If you are interested in being considered for co-chair of the PFCC SIG please send us your CV and a paragraph explaining your interest, background, experience, and anything you think important to know for our team. We would then invite an interested member to serve a 3 year term as co-chair.

Thanks again for being part on an outstanding SIG and we hope you will consider applying to serve as co-chair.

We are looking forward to continuing to promote exchange of experiences and ideas to establish a network that enables further research in PFCC in the upcoming academic year. If you have any great experiences, PFCC initiatives, programs, or research you want to share, please send us an email. We can share resources and highlight your program ideas in the newsletter and on our site.

If you have not been receiving emails from the PFCC SIG list serve. Please email Kristin Voos so we can add you.

SIG Co-Chairs:
Kristin Voos

Snezana Nena Osorio

Heather Toth

Michael Weisgerber

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Academic Pediatrics Journal Submission

Academic Pediatrics is thriving! Our submissions are increasing every year (doubled in the past 3 years). We are publishing excellent articles in health services research, health care delivery, education, systematic reviews, reflective pieces (In the Moment), and other reviews of major topics. I want to report to the APA membership about a major change in editors. For many years Maryellen Gusic and John Co led our journal as education editors. Both have moved on to other substantial positions and needed to relinquish their editor positions. We had a national search (led by Ivor Horn and a search committee) and I am delighted to report that Melissa Klein and Su-Ting Li will be our Associate Editors for Education! They have already started to work on the journal. Of note, we received an extremely large number of applicants from highly capable individuals, and hope that education experts from the APA continue to be active in submitting and reviewing for our journal. I feel this reflects the rapid advancement of educational scholarship and faculty development of education experts within our organization. Thank you for supporting our (your) journal.

Submitted by
Peter G. Szilagyi

Academic Pediatrics

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Maternal Child Health Bureau(MCHB)

HRSA funds the Perinatal and Infant Oral Health National Initiative

Access to a dental home remains a challenge for pregnant women, infants and children. Maternal Child Health Bureau launched the Perinatal and Infant Oral Health National Initiative in tandem with the release of the of the document: Oral Health Care During Pregnancy: A National Consensus Statement ( The purpose of the PIOHNI is to pursue an understanding of how to achieve sustainable statewide systems change that leads to sustainable oral health care for both pregnant women and infants most at risk. MCHB is using a multi-phase, six-year approach to accomplish this initiative that will result in evidence-informed strategies from state demonstration projects that will be translated into a national strategic framework.

Studies indicate that addressing and improving maternal oral health may reduce the amount of caries-producing oral bacteria that mothers transmit to their children during common parenting behavior.i,ii, Pregnancy is an ideal time for behavior modification and early intervention, as a mother's behavior can have a ripple effect on the health of the family across their life spans. Yet, while oral health care has been recognized as both safe and effective for pregnant women,iii many perinatal health professionals do not know how important it is for women to receive oral health care before, during, and after pregnancy.iv,v, Consequently, oral health care has not become an integral part of perinatal care. Research demonstrates that children whose mothers have poor oral health are at greater risk for developing dental caries,vii,viii, with as many as 20 percent affected by Early Childhood Caries (ECC), the term given to tooth decay in children under 71 months of age with decayed, missing, or filled teeth.ix

The focus of the Perinatal and Infant Oral Health National Initiative (PIOHNI) is to make available quality oral health care (such as education, preventive services and restorative treatment) in statewide health care delivery systems that serve pregnant women and infants most at ricks for oral disease. The mission of the PIOHQI Expansion grant program is to close gaps that have impeded the availability of quality oral health care, such as the lack of access to dental services and national data sources. One gap being addressed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)x is the lack of dental coverage, a known financial barrier limiting the ability to access oral health care. The ACA mandates dental coverage for children and preventive services for women. The good news is approximately 5.3 million more children are expected to have dental coverage, yet, states are already having problems identifying oral health professionals to support this increase in demand.xi And while preventive services for women are provided under ACA, preventive dental care is not specified.xii

The purpose of this grant program is to improve oral health access for pregnant women and their infants by integrating oral health into primary health care for pregnant women and infants during a time when pregnant women have increased access to health care coverage. Ultimately, by linking the delivery of oral health with primary care, the overall well-being of pregnant women and infants will be improved. To date MCHB has funded pilot projects in Connecticut, West Virginia and New York as well as a National Learning Network that will provide a structured learning collaborative. MCHB is currently set to fund PIOHQI Expansion grants in 2015, providing additional support for a set of states to facilitate expansion of statewide implementation test-sites. In collaboration with all PIOHQI pilot and expansion projects, the Network will coordinate the development and testing of the evidence-informed strategies that will effectively guide statewide health care systems transformation.

For those interested in more information on this initiative or other pediatric dental health topics please contact Pamella Vodicka, M.S. R.D. at

iAmerican College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Committee Opinion No. 569. Oral health care during pregnancy and through the lifespan. Obstet Gynecol 2013;122:417&345;22.
iiMeyer K, Geurtsen W, Gunay H. An early oral health care program starting during pregnancy. Clin Oral Invest 2010;14:257–264.
iiiXiong X, Buekens P, Vastardis S, Yu SM. Periodontal disease and pregnancy outcomes: state-of-the-science. Obstet Gynecol Surv (2007 Sep) 62(9):605-15.
ivCalifornia Dental Association Foundation, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists District IX. Oral Health During Pregnancy and Early Childhood: Evidence-Based Guidelines for Health Professionals. J Calif Dental Assoc 2010;38:391-403,405-40.
vSilk H, Douglass AB, Douglass JM, Silk L. Oral health during pregnancy.  American Family Physician, 2008; 77: 976-978.
viHwang SS, Smith VC, McCormick MC, Barfield WD. Racial/ethnic disparities in maternal oral health experiences in 10 states, pregnancy risk assessment monitoring system, 2004-2006. Matern Child Health J 2011;15(6):722-9.
viiBrown A. Access to Oral Health Care During the Perinatal Period: A PolicyBrief. Washington, D.C: National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center, 2008.
viiiBerkowitz RJ. Acquisition and transmission of mutans streptococci. J Calif Dent Assoc. 2003;31(2):135–138.
ixMathew F, Savage, Jessica Y. Lee, Jonathan B. Kotch and William F. Vann, Jr. Early Prevention Dental Visits: Effects on Subsequent Utilization and Costs. Pediatrics 2004;114 e418.
xACA Reference
xiThe Pew Charitable Trusts. The State of Children’s Dental Health: Making Coverage Matter, May 2011. [Found at:
xiiU.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Care Fact Sheets. Affordable Care Act Rules on Expanding Access to Preventive Services for Women. Last Updated: June 28,2013. [Found at:]

Submitted by
Elizabeth Edgerton

Maternal Child Health Bureau
Elizabeth Edgerton

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RAPID 2014 Call for nomination


Fall Mentoring and Career Development Conference

Academic Pediatric Association
Research in Academic Pediatrics Initiative on Diversity (RAPID)
Supported by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

We invite nominations (including self-nominations) for the exciting 2014 RAPID Fall Mentoring and Career Development Conference. Eligible attendees include junior faculty, fellows, and residents who are members of an underrepresented minority group (URM), disabled, or from a socially, culturally, economically, or educationally disadvantaged background, and who are committed to a career in academic general pediatrics (including health services research, medical education, adolescent medicine, public health, epidemiology, emergency medicine, child maltreatment, hospitalist medicine, developmental/behavioral pediatrics, and other general pediatric clinical research domains). Up to five individuals will be selected to attend the conference (all expenses paid), which will be held December 9-10, 2014, in Grapevine, Texas. Highlights of the conference include:

  • A panel discussion on keys to success for young investigators; the panel will consist of the RAPID National Advisory Committee (NAC), Director, and Co-Director, who are leading senior researchers and mentors in general pediatrics
  • A speed mentoring session in which participants get one-on-one mentoring from all members of the RAPID National Advisory Committee (NAC), Director, and Co-Director
  • Networking opportunities with leaders in the fields of health disparities, health services research, obesity, nutrition, sickle cell disease, and immigrant health
  • Developing a career-development plan for academic success

After last year's conference in 2013, a survey of attendees revealed uniform agreement that the conference was valuable for young investigators. Attendee comments included, "the mentoring was phenomenal!" and "one of the best conferences I have attended."

Photo: 2013 RAPID Fall Conference attendees, including young investigators, 2013 RAPID Scholars, RAPID NAC members, and the RAPID Director and Co-Director.

To apply, please e-mail 1) a one-page letter of nomination, describing your reasons for wanting to attend the conference, your commitment to a career in academic general pediatrics, and your career goals; and 2) a curriculum vitae. The deadline for submission of materials is November 3, 2014, at 5:00 pm Eastern. Applicants will be notified regarding a selection decision by the week of November 10, 2014.

Please submit your nomination and CV or requests for additional information to:
Jennifer Padilla
Academic Pediatric Association
703.556.8729 fax

Submitted by:
Glenn Flores

RAPID Director

Fernando S. Mendoza
RAPID Co-Director

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