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Child Health Disparities Are Not Inevitable

10/19/2012 For Release: October 19, 2012
​​​​​​NEW ORLEANS - A day before pediatricians gather in New Orleans for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference & Exhibition, the AAP will host a day-long seminar on health disparities.
The Pediatrics for the 21st Century program, "Embracing Every Child: Combating Health Disparities in Your Practice and Community," shows it is possible to reduce health disparities by using quality improvement practice strategies and partnering with community resources. Taking place from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, the program offers practical tips to provide patient-centered, high-quality and equitable care for an increasingly diverse child population.
The program will include presentations from the following experts in child health disparities:
  • 1:00 p.m. - Richard E Besser, MD, FAAP, presents "Reducing Health Disparities in an Evolving Healthcare System." Dr. Besser is ABC News' senior health and medical editor, providing medical analysis and commentary for all ABC News broadcasts and platforms, including "World News with Diane Sawyer," "Good Morning America" and "Nightline."
  • 1:30 p.m. - Anne Beal, MD, discusses the evolution of disparities research from simply describing the issue to an intervention and effectiveness focus in her presentation, "Disparities Research and Quality Improvement." Dr. Beal is the chief operating officer of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute in Washington, DC.
  • 2:00 p.m. - Tina Cheng, MD, FAAP, presents the latest child health disparities research and data trends in her presentation, "Childhood Health Disparities Data and Trends." Dr. Cheng is chief of general pediatrics and adolescent medicine and associate professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
  • 2:45 p.m. - Denice Cora-Bramble, MD, FAAP, offers tools and strategies for providing culturally effective and high-quality care in her presentation, "Providing Culturally and Linguistically Effective Care." Dr. Cora-Bramble is the senior vice president of the Diana L. and Stephen A. Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, DC.
  • 3:15 p.m. - Darren DeWalt, MD, presents "Improving Communications and Health Literacy With Diverse Populations," which focuses on best practices to improve health communications and address low health literacy. Dr. DeWalt is associate professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  • 3:45 p.m. - Renée R. Jenkins, MD, FAAP, facilitates participant discussion about implementing strategies to provide equitable care as part of, "Case Discussion: Making Changes in Your Own Practice and Community." Dr. Jenkins is a professor and chair of the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health at Howard University in Washington, DC, and is a past president of the AAP.

  • 4:05 p.m. - Fernando Mendoza, MD, FAAP, discusses "Reducing Immigrant Child Health Disparities" by addressing the role culturally based health beliefs in immigrant child health outcomes. Dr. Mendoza is professor and chief of the Division of General Pediatrics at the Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford University School of Medicine in Palo Alto, Calif.
  • 4:35 p.m. - Sandra Robinson, MD, provides strategies for pediatricians to identify and partner with community resources to reduce health disparities in "Partnering With Community Resources to Address Social Determinants of Health Disparities." Dr. Robinson is a practicing pediatrician in New Orleans. She is the former secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources for the state of Louisiana, state health officer, and former president of Children's Medical Care.
  • 5:05 p.m. - Q&A/Call to Action - Participants will have the opportunity to make a "Commitment to Change" by identifying a specific action to take toward reducing health disparities in their pediatric practice and community.
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 60,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit

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