Recognizing the importance of developing leaders in community health, global heath, and research, we have developed three pathways to allow residents to further develop skills in these three areas. The Community Pediatrics and Advocacy Pathway (CPAP) and Global Health Pathway were started in 2008 and the Integrated Research Pathway was added in 2009.
Residents apply to the pathways in their first year of residency with dedicated pathway months in the R2 and R3 year.
Community Pediatrics and Advocacy Pathway
The Community Pediatrics and Advocacy Pathway provides public health, clinical and research experience. The goal is to understand and influence determinants of child health and health disparities at the community level. Residents in the CPAP pathway have two blocks of dedicated time during their R2 year – one including intensive didactics and skill building with Global Health Pathway residents and one to learn the basics of community health needs assessment. In the R3 year, two blocks are reserved to work on longitudinal, shared health promotion and advocacy projects. Residents are based at the Yakima Valley Farm Workers' Clinic in Toppenish and focus on the children and families of the local community. The specific focus of these activities changes over time, but residents are encouraged to develop and meet individual learning goals while enjoying exposure to role models and career options in community pediatrics and advocacy.
Some recent projects have included:
- Using “digital storytelling” as a behavior change intervention with Alaska Native women, focusing on child health issues such as vaccinations and breastfeeding.
- Using geographic information systems and analysis to map access to pediatric services for Medicaid patients in King County.
- Working with Hispanic families seen in the ED for non-urgent issues to identify barriers to primary care utilization in this population.
- Conducting policy advocacy with public and private payers in support of reimbursement for screening and treatment of pediatric obesity.
Global Health Pathway
The Global Health (GH) Pathway is an opportunity for those residents interested in global health to achieve more training in public health, clinical service and research. Residents in the GH pathway have two blocks of dedicated time during their R2 year – one including intensive didactics and skill building with Community Pediatrics and Advocacy Pathway residents and one to learn the basics of community health needs assessment. In the R3 year GH Pathway residents participate in a two-month experiential learning program in Kenya. Residents are exposed to pediatric health services through clinical experience in public care settings including a 40-bed pediatric ward of a provincial hospital in rural Kisii, Kenya. The bulk of their time, however, is spent conducting community-based child health assessments and interventions working with the Kisii public health network that is headquartered at the Kisii Provincial Hospital. The specific focus of these activities changes over time but residents are encouraged to develop and meet individual learning goals while enjoying exposure to role models and career options in global health.
Our program is unique in that our residents are paired with University of Nairobi pediatric residents who live and work alongside them both on the wards and during their mentored population health project. The goal is to get both residents out of the hospital setting, looking upstream at the determinants of child health in Kenya. This pairing allows for support and sharing of expertise between residents and promotes a more in-depth understanding of Kenyan culture and medical training. With each resident pairing, the program makes further inroads into building a sustainable partnership with the larger Kisii community.
Integrated Research Pathway
The Integrated Research Pathway is an American Board of Pediatrics–sanctioned pathway to foster the development of physician scientists. This pathway provides the opportunity to sustain research interest, skills, knowledge, and productivity during core pediatric training while offering a means for fostering transition into a physician-scientist career. Residents in this pathway have two dedicated research months in their R2 year and five months in their R3 year. Pathway faculty help residents find appropriate mentors and projects with the goal of entering fellowship training better prepared to be productive during fellowship, whether at Seattle Children’s Hospital or a different institution.