NEWS May 24, 2022
PHN Welcomes Newest Medical Director: Claire Boogaard, M.D., M.P.H.
Claire Boogaard, M.D., M.P.H., has joined the Pediatric Health Network as Medical Director. Please see her note to the community below.
Dear PHN community,
When I was asked to write this doctor’s note a few weeks ago, I had drafted a letter introducing myself to the network, expressing my excitement to begin working with you all to identify and combat pediatric gaps in care. However, after the tragic shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde forced me to focus on the stark realities impacting our children’s lives, I wanted to shift the focus of this note to highlight the importance of this network’s mission.
Currently, in this country, we are battling an onslaught of public health and cultural epidemics that negatively impact child health: gun violence, racism, mental illness, COVID-19, healthcare workforce burnout, formula shortages, etc. One of these alone could drive poor outcomes in child health but having them all present at once makes poor health outcomes almost inevitable. Almost … What can turn this trajectory around, and what has throughout history, is well-intentioned people armed with the right information and resources, working together to make positive change one step at a time. What is a better definition of the Pediatric Health Network than that?
Yes, the need for change is urgent, and, yes, the solutions and resources are not always (or dare I say “yet”) at our fingertips. But as Mark Weissman always says, “we can’t make perfection the enemy of the good” and this group is a prime example of how great collective work positively impacts the lives of thousands of children every day. I am honored to be joining this community and so grateful that we have all come together to do this work.
Thank you all for everything you do. As we find ourselves in almost constant mourning with each new news story, I hope you never feel alone. You are part of at least one great community of people that are here to support you as you strive to better the lives of those around you. Please take care of yourself and each other.
Claire Boogaard, MD, MPH
Medical Director, PHN