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We are taking on what may be most important work of our lives :

April 28, 2020

Editor's note:For the latest news on coronavirus disease 2019, visit

As I write this, the world and its physicians are in the midst of a global public health crisis moving at a speed and scale most of us have never seen. We find ourselves facing SARS-Cov-2 with too little information, not enough personal protective equipment and no room for error.

We are learning together about the diagnosis and management of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Our infectious disease and neonatology colleagues, disaster preparedness experts and so many others have stepped in to help guide the Academy’s response. Our AAP staff also has been incredibly nimble and established an internal response team that meets at least twice a day to monitor the situation and respond. Our COVID-19 webpage at posts the latest confirmed developments and guidance related to the pandemic.

The Board of Directors also meets regularly to discuss what we’re learning and how we can support our pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists. And we continue to hear from members who have questions and ideas about how to respond to the pandemic via and our COVID-19 virtual community that connects AAP members through discussion boards and a shared resource library at

I visit the discussion boards and review the emails we receive daily. From hospitalists on the front lines to independently owned private practices providing the foundation of care that will keep children out of emergency rooms, the change is hard on each of us — straining our resources, finances and staff. It all adds to our uncertainty and (let’s admit it) fear.

In my practice, we’ve had to furlough staff and cut providers’ salaries. I know many of you face even greater burdens. We continue to press the administration and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to help pediatric practices and children’s hospitals facing financial crisis. We will continue to make your needs known to those in the highest levels of government and ensure that struggling practices and hospitals receive adequate funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

We’ll also continue to push the administration to do what it needs to do to increase surge capacity and protect the health and well-being of our pediatricians and health care provider colleagues.

Because crises like COVID-19 create further health and social disparities in society, it’s more important than ever to prioritize equity and make sure we reach the children and families who need us most. We are working with our public health colleagues and the administration to ensure all plans to flatten the curve are shaped by an understanding of its spread and impact among communities of color and other marginalized groups. Failing to take into account deep-rooted structural inequities increases the burden of disease not only for those in tenuous situations but for everyone.

When I began my presidential year in January, I knew we’d be honoring the Academy’s 90th anniversary, but I never imagined the extent to which we, ourselves, would be making history. What we’re doing now will be written and talked about for years to come.

Thank you for rising to the occasion and for all the sacrifices you are making to protect families, save lives and lead our nation forward. Our community is vital to sustaining our resolve. I know all of us will continue to use every ounce of our expertise to protect families and save lives. We’re going to do this, and we’re going to do this together.

Please continue to let us know what you need and how we can help.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is with you and for you. I am proud and honored to work alongside you as we do what may well be the most important work of our lives.

Stay healthy and safe.

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