From October 25 to October 29, 2019, more than 10,000 pediatricians from all over the world gathered in the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, to attend the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference and Exhibition. As the world's largest pediatric medical education event, the AAP National Conference draws pediatricians, like me, to network with mentors and colleagues, learn about the latest clinical guidelines and policies, and be inspired to renew ...

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I recently had the amazing opportunity to both witness and participate in an event where my Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) pediatric mentor received a lifetime achievement award for her many years of exemplary service to the pediatric community of Southern New Jersey. My mentor's leadership, compassion, and dedication to serving the Latino community have set an example — not only for patients and their families but for generations of pediatricians ...

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In the early evenings after work, I thoroughly enjoy taking brisk walks. Walks are a great opportunity to exercise, of course, but I also cherish making time for myself to process the many thoughts that can occupy the mind of a busy physician. My walks are typically the only time of the day when I can quietly meditate, ruminate, prioritize concerns, or simply restore my soul. As I walk, I get ...

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As a pediatrician, who is also the busy mother of two school-aged children, the end of the summer brings a lot of mixed emotions.  As parents and guardians, we can rejoice, while our kiddos may experience a wide range of feelings.  The joy of reuniting with their school friends is often tainted by worries of the unknown challenges ahead.  When preparing for and beginning a new academic year with new ...

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As a medical director and practicing physician, I count myself fortunate to meet and engage in meaningful conversations with many health care professionals throughout the state of Pennsylvania. Recently I was both humbled and inspired when I visited with a group of primary care physicians who operate their private practice in a rural community. These doctors are not only staunchly committed to serving a community that so desperately needs them, ...

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This summer, not unlike many families across the country, we were fortunate enough to visit a theme park while celebrating our break from another challenging school year. Being a mother and a pediatrician, I must admit how concerned I was to witness the number of children with obesity attending the park. While we waited in line for the various rides, I couldn't help considering how best to advise families on making ...

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Although pediatric (children's) hospitals are not yet mandated (as are their general population counterparts) to participate in value-based contracts (VBCs), as competitive medical institutions they are very cognizant of the market changes toward value-based payment models while tirelessly seeking to increase value in pediatric health care delivery. The push towards better alignment of payers and hospital systems continues to change the landscape of competitive health care. Children's hospitals "are the backbone ...

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I am a physician who was born and raised in Puerto Rico. I confess that since I was a child, I have always wanted to visit Roberto Clemente's statue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Recently, my dream came true when a meeting I attended in the city allowed me to see it for the first time. I was overjoyed to personally witness how Pittsburgh had honored Roberto's memory. There I was, standing ...

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Recently, a friend’s mother asked me how to best support her daughter’s decision to breastfeed her first grandchild.  The new grandmother questioned her ability to encourage her daughter’s decision because she had not breastfed her own child, and this lack of experience made her feel unqualified to provide support.  With mixed emotions and a lingering sense of guilt, this new grandmother wanted to learn, from a pediatrician friend, how best ...

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Recently I had the wonderful, yet solemn opportunity of attending my ninety-three-year-old paternal uncle's funeral.  I purposely choose the word "wonderful" to describe this experience because honoring the life of such a remarkable man, surrounded by my family who will continue to love him dearly, was such a special gift.  Amid today's increasingly complex world of business and "social" media, it is often a challenge to pause, to reflect, to ...

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