Decades of research have demonstrated that adverse childhood experiences such as child abuse and neglect and household dysfunction are associated with an increased risk for poor social, emotional and physical health that extends into adulthood. Launched in 2015, the Division of Public Health Pediatrics was established to prevent and mitigate childhood adversities and to provide care for our community’s most vulnerable children. The mission of the Division is to create a healthier future for Texas’ children and families by leading in patient care, education, services and research that seeks to mitigate childhood adversities and foster individual, family and community resilience. The Division’s four pillars include:
- Clinical services: The Division of Public Health Pediatrics team provides support and clinical services to children who are suspected victims of abuse and neglect and to children who are in the foster care system.
- Training and education: The Division offers training and educational sessions to professionals and community members. We also provide extensive training opportunities for medical students, residents and fellows in the field of child abuse pediatrics, childhood adversities and resilience.
- Research: The Division participates in and leads a robust portfolio of research initiatives to generate new knowledge in the fields of child maltreatment diagnosis and treatment, childhood adversities, early brain development, maternal and child health, child welfare and resilience.
- Community programs: The Division offers a suite of community-based programs to pregnant women and families with young children. The programs address early brain development, basic needs and physical and mental health.
Through clinical services, training and education, research and community programs, the Division of Public Health Pediatrics is leading a larger effort to reframe how children and families receive care and services that mitigate adversities and that foster resilience within our community.