Current medical students and residents are training in an unprecedented time of change and opportunity. Knowledge on early brain and child development and the profound influence of early childhood on lifelong health will – and must – alter the practice of pediatrics. The AAP has acknowledged this need in the 2013 policy statement on Community Pediatrics in striking terms, calling for clear curricula that address community and public health topics pertaining to child health, social determinants of health, linkages to community resources, and legislative advocacy skills.
This comes at the same time as dramatic changes in program requirements, accreditation and milestones demand more rigorous attention to how we imbed community pediatrics/ systems-based practice within curricula to ensure that future doctors are equipped with the necessary skills to positively impact child health. Docs for Tots believes that infusing early childhood advocacy, community engagement and best practices represent an ideal opportunity to meet program requirements while impacting trainees skill sets. Trainees gain opportunities to view themselves as leaders, team consultants and advocates while meeting their milestones. At the same time, trainees impact the health trajectories of the children in the communities where they train.
We encourage you to use our resources throughout your curricula. We would be happy to discuss grand rounds, noon conferences or consultation opportunities with your program. Consider encouraging your residents, students and faculty to join our network. They will receive valuable information, resources and opportunities.