148. Mental Health Leadership: AAP President Dr. Sandy Chung’s Journey

This episode of “Pediatric Meltdown” features an insightful conversation with Doctor Sandy Chung, the 2023 president of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Chung joins host Dr. Lia Gaggino to discuss the importance of investing in children’s mental health. The AAP is a national organization that represents over 67,000 pediatricians and aims to promote the health and well-being of children. Dr. Sandy Chung’s advocacy work through VMAP and AAP has been instrumental in shaping the discourse on children’s mental health and providing access to mental health care. While policymakers need to understand the need for long-term investment in children’s mental health, it is also the responsibility of every individual to prioritize mental health and create supportive environments for young people. Let us all work towards prioritizing the mental health of children and building a brighter future for coming generations.

[00:33 -18:39] Being the First Chinese American President of the AAP

  • Overcoming barriers and inspiring change
  • Importance of breaking stereotypes and categories  
  • Encouraging individuals to pursue leadership roles
  • Finding the right group of like-minded professionals

 

[18:40 – 27:11]  Making Mental Health Care Sustainable and Accessible

  • Implementing group therapy appointments, integrated behavioral health, brief interventions, and collaborative care to make mental health care more accessible and affordable
  • The AAP is actively working on making mental health care a top child health priority and advocating for sustainable funding and support
  • AAP aims to raise awareness about the value of pediatricians in early mental health intervention and promote the importance of prevention and resilience-building in children.  
  •  It is crucial for individuals, government, employers, and society as a whole to prioritize and support mental health care to ensure healthy and productive adult outcomes.

[27:12 – 35:13]  Challenges in Addressing Mental Health in Healthcare

  • Lack of awareness and understanding of the importance of mental health in healthcare
  • The need for momentum and improvement in addressing mental health  
  • The broader conversation of investing in children’s well-being
  • Short-term perspective in healthcare financing and the need for a long-term investment approach

[35:14 – 41:19]  Embracing Opportunities and Making a Difference in Pediatric Practice

  • Letting go of future worries: Embracing the uncertainty of life and career progression
  • Seizing opportunities: The power of taking chances and making a positive impact
  • Making a difference, big or small: Recognizing the potential to create change in everyday practice
  • Preventing future hardships: Harnessing the experiences of pediatric care to improve outcomes for children and families 

[41:20 – 46:17]  Closing Segment Takeaway

 

Links to resources mentioned on the show

National Network of Child Psychiatry Access Programs – find one near you!

www.nncpap.org/map

 

Other episodes you may like:

112 Schizophrenia: Recognizing the Early Symptoms

  96 AAP Blueprint for Youth Suicide Prevention: A Roadmap

  91 Youth Mental Health Crisis: An Opportunity for Innovation

 

Key quotes for Twitter:

“Investing in children’s mental health is part of a bigger conversation about investing in children.”… Dr. Sandy Chung

“Optimizing children’s health and productivity is everyone’s responsibility.”… Dr. Sandy Chung

 

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Dr Lia Gaggino

Dr Lia Gaggino Host of the Pediatric Meltdown Podcast

Dr. Lia Gaggino has worked as a pediatrician for over 30 years on the west side of Michigan. During her career as a primary care physician, she has been privileged to care for children and adolescents, and know that their success is closely tied to mental wellness.

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Dr. Lia Gaggino has worked as a pediatrician for over 30 years on the west side of Michigan. During her career as a primary care physician, she has been privileged to care for children and adolescents, and know that their success is closely tied to mental wellness.

Recent Episodes

  • All Post
  • ADHD
  • Advocacy
  • Aggression and Disruptive Behaviors
  • Anxiety
  • Autism
  • Depression
  • Genetics
  • LGBTQIA+
  • Mental Health
  • Other
  • Pain
  • Parent/child
  • Physician Well-Being
  • Schizophrenia
  • Sleep
  • Social Media
  • Substance Abuse
  • Suicide Prevention
  • Trauma

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