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AAP committed to member well-being, changing culture in pediatric health care

July 1, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges and exacerbated old ones for pediatricians. As we emerge from this global crisis, the AAP is renewing its focus on member well-being.

The Board of Directors’ Member Value and Engagement Committee is exploring strategies to continue supporting and building member well-being. The committee aims to promote wellness as an organizational quality metric and elevate clinician self-care as fundamental to the pediatric milestones.

Additionally, the AAP is partnering with other organizations to address wellness. Following are resources from those groups.

The American Medical Association (AMA) STEPS Forward webinar series focuses on practice transformation. Topics include prioritizing mental health and building bridges with administration.

The most recent webinar reported on results from the AMA’s national assessment tool that monitors well-being, burnout and stress in health care workers and nonclinical staff. The results validate what many of pediatricians are experiencing: work overload due to COVID-19 and increased anxiety and depression. View the webinar, “Health care well-being and burnout during COVID-19: Findings from a national survey,” at

The National Institute for Health Care Management recently released the webinar “It’s OK to Not Be OK: Physician Burnout and Mental Health” ( The webinar included an infographic exploring the link between moral injury and burnout. Moral injury describes the challenge of knowing what care patients need but being unable to provide it due to a variety of constraints beyond a physician’s control such as inadequate payment or bureaucratic tasks.

The webinar noted that physicians who experience moral injury and burnout are more likely to quit than those who don’t have these experiences, and their patients may have worse clinical outcomes.

The National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience has collated numerous COVID-19-specific resources from health care organizations at Among them are the AAP’s Resilience in Stressful Times webinar,

PeerRx,, is a free peer-to-peer program that provides support, connection, encouragement, resources and skill-building for physicians and others working in health care. Its goal is to help participants advance along the Burnout to Thriving Index.

The AAP mentorship program ( is another avenue to combat distress by building personal and professional connections.

The AAP is committed member well-being and leading a culture change in pediatric health care. Find additional resources on the AAP Physician Health and Wellness webpage at

Dr. Middlemist is a member of the AAP Board of Directors representing District VIII.

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