Getting Back Out Into the World: The “New Normal” of Pediatric Global Health in 200 Words

male doctor in white coat texting on his cell phone

If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it’s that we are highly adaptable and can rise to meet the needs of the moment. We ration face masks that were previously one per-patient-room and can identify our colleagues behind masks and goggles. Our homes have become remote schools, and we teach ourselves the “new” third-grade math on YouTube so we can, in turn, educate our children. 

Despite our best efforts, COVID-19 significantly disrupted health care delivery, interrupting child health across the globe: close to 80 million children under age 1 missed out on lifesaving vaccines, and 6 million more children under age 5 suffered from wasting and malnutrition. 

The October Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) Pediatric Global Health Conference will provide opportunities for all types of providers to explore the impact of COVID-19 on child health and review strategies to make up for lost time. We organized two skill-based sessions which will prepare clinicians to teach and work in low-resource settings both in-person and remotely, which will be particularly important amid pandemic recovery. A Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) Master Trainer Course will equip providers with the skills to teach neonatal resuscitation, and a Global Health Bootcamp will teach competence in both hands-on lifesaving clinical skills as well as tele-simulation.

It’s through forums like these that we can come together to discuss solutions and equip each other to meet children’s needs post-pandemic, while ensuring they catch up on missed care and services.

This post is part of our “____ in 200 Words” series. In this series, we tackle issues related to children’s health policy and explain and connect you to resources to help understand them further, all in 200 words. If you have any suggestions for a topic in this series, please send a note to PolicyLab’s Strategic Operations & Communications Director Lauren Walens.

Drs. Keri Cohn and Alexandra Vinograd are emergency medicine and global health physicians at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Cohn is currently leading the Emergency Department’s COVID-19 response. Mazvita Rankin is a senior grants writer in the Global Medicine Department at CHOP.