Pediatric Residency Program awarded AAP Visiting Professorship

By Roman Petrowski, Office of Communications

Dr. Katie Plax - AAP Visiting Professorship
Katie Plax, MD

The American Academy of Pediatrics has awarded Sandra McKay, MD, FAAP, associate professor, and Prajakta Yeragi, MD, assistant professor, and the Department of Pediatrics Residency Program, with a Leonard P. Rome CATCH Visiting Professorship Grant to promote advocacy for children and advance the field of community pediatrics.

The Visiting Professorship will welcome Katie Plax, MD, Ferring Family Chair Professor of Pediatrics and division chief of adolescent medicine at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, on April 9. Plax will give a grand rounds lecture at 8 a.m. in MSB 1.006, followed by a community panel event addressing mental health in Houston, as well as a round table discussion and small group discussion/breakout sessions in MSB G.100.

Plax is the medical director of the SPOT (Supporting Positive Opportunities with Teens), a program developed in 2008 to address the serious health risks facing youth ages 13 to 24 in the St. Louis region.

The aim of the Visiting Professorship rotation is to improve child health outcomes in the Houston area by increasing Pediatric Resident Physicians’ understanding of the social determinants of health, providing ways that they can get involved in partnerships with local organizations, and giving them the tools to advocate for their patients on the local, state, and national levels.

The AAP’s Rome Visiting Professorship Program offers up to five accredited pediatric residency programs with a maximum of $4,500 each to implement a 2- or 3-day community health and advocacy educational program focusing on resident education, faculty development, and community partnerships. The Visiting Professorship was established in honor of Leonard P. Rome, MD, a pediatrician and tireless advocate who dedicated his life to improving children’s health.