Peter Asante, MD, FAAP
Kathleen Kieran, MD, MSc, MME, FAAP, FACS
Co-chairs, WCAAP Equitable Care Work Group
Co-editors, WCAAP Equitable Care Toolkit
WCAAP Board of Trustees
In the wake of 2020’s nationwide reckoning with racism, many companies and organizations released statements in support of BIPOC communities and in opposition to racism. The Washington Chapter of the AAP did the same, but we felt the need to take further action. We convened a select group of our members to meet and create an instrument of instruction for ourselves and each other, for our colleagues and organizations, to meaningfully affirm and uplift under-resourced communities we serve.
The result is a toolkit to focus and challenge the work we do as pediatric providers, transforming our work through a lens of anti-racism and equity, diversity, and inclusion. The four major sections of the toolkit – Provider Education, Physical Space, Safe and Effective Care, and Promoting Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Healthcare Organizations – are each meant to raise the question “what more can I do to support our families and communities in a manner that leads to equitable care for children and adolescents?” Our aim is to provide a tool to engage learners and thinkers at all levels, providing information and resources as well as tangible practical tools to enact change. It was important to us these tools be accessible, so that they could be used by anyone today, tomorrow, and in strategic planning meetings for years to come.
We hope the content presented in the toolkit inspires you to feel emboldened to begin having these necessary – and often uncomfortable – conversations, to safely reimagine ways to develop your clinical space to inclusively affirm patients and families, expand the notion of our pattern recognition to clinch a diagnosis and develop a treatment plan, and to advocate for systemic change within your organizational leadership in providing equitable care.
Finally, we hope that this toolkit is just the beginning of a journey for all of us as child health advocates. This toolkit is not meant to be a stagnant instruction manual. The content presented in the coming pages is meant to continually engage learners as they navigate this work. We hope that you will also find that this toolkit reflects our goals for anti-racism and diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts – namely active, intentional, and ongoing work to reach our goals for a more perfect union.