A history of the academic pediatric association's public policy and advocacy initiatives

Judith S. Palfrey, Tina L. Cheng, Mark A. Schuster

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Since the APA's birth 50 years ago, its members have been committed to advocating for policies that promote and protect children's health. Over the past 50 years there have been many public policy victories and enormous advances in children's health and health care. Many of the infectious diseases that were once killing and disabling children are now largely prevented or controlled by vaccines and antibiotics. Because of public policy actions by APA in conjunction with other child advocacy organizations, there are now protections for children from some environmental toxins, such as lead. Injury and poison prevention have advanced because of APA advocacy. The APA has also been a consistent advocate for children's access to high-quality health services and has seen some progress in this realm over the past 5 decades. Members have vocally defended legislation that supports health professional training, which has resulted in successful training programs that encourage the development of the pediatric primary care workforce. Furthermore, members of the APA have been leaders in developing the firm data base establishing the vital importance of health insurance coverage and in disseminating this information broadly. The nation now has a historic health care law. However, even with all of these accomplishments, there is no time for complacency. The health of US children is not what it should be, and the APA's voice in public policy is needed now as much, if not more, than ever.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)205-210
Number of pages6
JournalAcademic pediatrics
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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