Just as we work to develop residents into excellent clinicians, we work equally hard to give residents the skills needed to be an effective child advocate for the rest of their careers. Every resident in our program receives frontline advocacy and community health training as part of our core curriculum.
In addition to this rotation, residents are encouraged to develop scholarly projects related to their passions and have pursued numerous advocacy-related initiatives spanning a wide range of topics including children’s health insurance, early literacy, healthy eating, housing insecurity, and food insecurity. Our residents have the opportunity to work closely with dedicated and innovative attorney colleagues via our Medical Legal Partnership.
Community Pediatrics and Advocacy Rotation
This rotation allows residents to explore social determinants of health that affect the well-being of children and families in North Texas. Residents have an opportunity to learn about poverty, food insecurity, health disparities, access to health insurance, homelessness, toxic stress and much more. Residents learn about community organizations that provide services and resources for children and families. Listed below are some of our current community partners.
- Aunt Bette’s Community Pantry
- Bridge Homeless Shelter
- Dallas County Health and Human Services
- The Family Place Domestic Violence Shelter
- HOMES Mobile Clinic (Parkland Hospital and Health Services)
- Juega Conmigo (UT Dallas)
- Lumin Bachman Lake Community School
- Medical-Legal Partnership (Legal Aid of North Texas, UTSW, Children’s Health)
- New Horizons Drop-Out Prevention Program for Pregnant/Parenting Teens with Garland ISD
- Nexus Recovery Center and Nexus Generations (Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation)
- North Texas Food Bank
- Perot Museum
- Team KiPOW (Pershing Elementary School)
- Vogel Alcove Daycare Center for Homeless Children
- Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) Program
In addition, residents meet with faculty and staff with expertise in topics pertinent to child health including the following subjects and activities:
- Asthma Management
- Car Seat Safety
- Child Abuse and Neglect
- Community Mental Health
- Family Focused Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing
- Foster Care
- Government Relations
- Injury Prevention
- Media Relations
- Public Health Insurance
- Public Health Law Basics
- Seacrest Studios
- Social Determinants of Health
Lastly, residents further explore community and current issues by conducting a windshield tour comparing the built environment of various Dallas neighborhoods, experiencing how a family might live on SNAP benefits, training to be a COVID-19 contact tracer, and watching documentaries that delve into these important issues.
Team Kid Power (Team KiPOW!)
This experience joins medical students, residents, and 2nd grade students at Pershing Elementary school to promote healthy eating, exercise, and mental health. Our residents have collaborated with this elementary school for 4 years, and activities have been funded by 3 AAP Resident Community Access to Child Health (CATCH) grants. Residents have the opportunity to teach components of the curriculum and role model healthy behaviors by eating lunch with students and engaging in activities during recess. This year residents plan to add a mental health component to the curriculum. Learn more about this project by reading the current CATCH grant summary here.
Residents also have the opportunity to prepare and present a fun and interactive activity in the Seacrest Studio. Residents use the multi-media studio in the hospital to interact with patients in a fun and creative way. Residents love to have design interactive and educational programming for patients, and the patients love to see their doctors doing something fun!
Each Spring, residents and trainees throughout Texas have the opportunity to participate in the Texas Pediatric Society's Annual Advocacy Day. This event is held either in the state capitol of Austin or virtually, depending on COVID-related precautions. During this event, trainees attend a morning of workshops covering how to craft an effective policy-related "elevator pitch" and discussing current legislative topics of importance to pediatrics. Trainees also hear from keynote speakers in the legislative advocacy field. In the afternoon, attendees meet with Texas legislators to discuss policies of note, and to advocate for the health of children and families.
Community Organization Resident Practicum (CORP) Elective
Founded in 2019 by former Chief Resident Dr. Abbey Kissel, the CORP elective is a 2-week seminar that aims to foster relationships between Resident physicians and the many critical community organizations that work to ensure the comprehensive health of patients and families. Residents partake in both formal lectures and informal round table discussions with leaders from local health care systems, non-governmental organizations, and social outreach programs. Advocacy organizations also conduct leadership and communications workshops to prepare Residents to better understand the intricacies of policy-based advocacy and its role in Pediatric health care. In addition, each Resident is also paired with a Community mentor for the duration of their time in Residency in order to better understand the needs of local organizations and advocate for the health of patients and families. Keynote speakers have included leadership from the United Way, Texans Care for Children, the Dallas Morning News, and Fleishman Hillard. Applications are accepted in the fall of Intern year for participation the following Summer.
- Pediatric Residency Program