Current News

NYSUT, NYS American Academy of Pediatrics launch statewide back-to-school ad campaign 

ALBANY, N.Y. Aug. 23, 2021 — New York State United Teachers* and the NYS American Academy of Pediatrics today launched a new statewide television and digital advertising campaign to highlight the importance of ensuring all students return to in-person instruction in the fall.

The ad, titled “Let Me Show You,” focuses on the benefits of in-person learning — including hands-on instruction, social interaction critical for development and extracurricular activities that round out students’ education — with health protocols in place and agreement among educators and public health experts that in-person learning can be done safely.

The 30-second ad can be viewed here: .  It will air in all regions of the state through the first day of school.

“We know the best place for students to learn is in the classroom, and every student deserves access to full-time, in-person instruction this year,” NYSUT President Andy Pallotta said. “We support the health protocols recommended by health experts, including family pediatricians, and state education officials. With a layered, holistic approach in place that ensures the health and safety of everyone in our schools, our educators are here to welcome their students with open arms on the first day of school.”

“Prioritizing in-person education is critical for every child’s social and educational development.  As pediatricians, we want parents to understand that this can be done in a safe way when schools layer critical health strategies,” said Dr. Warren Seigel, Chair, NYS American Academy of Pediatrics, District II. “In-person education not only benefits children academically, but also socially and emotionally. Pediatricians are here to help families understand how critical being in school is and how to keep everyone safe.”

The ad is funded by a grant from the American Federation of Teachers as part of the national union’s nationwide Back to School for All initiative championing a return to five-days-a-week in-person instruction in all schools. More information on the AFT campaign can be found here:

*New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO. 

Post-COVID Immunizations Requirements letter, June 2021

Considering the COVID-19 pandemic, the NYS Education Department is extending the timeframe for students to provide a health examination for school attendance for the 2020-2021 school year.  Effective May 11, 2021 the Board of Regents approved emergency action to amend Commissioner’s Regulations 136.3(b) and (c) for the 2020-2021 school year permitting a student who is unable to obtain a health examination in the required grade due to the COVID19 crisis to have until September 1, 2021 to provide the required health examination to the school.

We encourage schools to communicate this revised timeframe to parents/guardians.  Such communication should inform the parent/guardian that the school district’s director of school health services (a.k.a. medical director) will complete a health examination at the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year for students who do not provide a health examination certificate from a private healthcare provider for the 2020-2021 school year by September 1, 2021.

To assist schools in completing additional health examinations, medical directors may choose to postpone completing health examinations until after December 31, 2021 for students who do not provide a health certificate for the 2021-2022 school year.

Please contact the Office of Student Support Services if you have questions by email at or at 518-486-6090.

Instructions for Completion of the New York State School Health Examination EHR Compatible Form

The instructions above have been approved by the Department of Education.  This documents can be used to develop an EMR compatible form.  Once developed, physicians can use EMR generated forms instead of using the form that the DeD developed which requires manual entry of all the data fields.


AAP Policy Statement:  The Impact of Racism on Child and Adolescent Health

School Form Considerations During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Outbreak –

  • New AAP Red Book Online Resource

Health officials are currently investigating an outbreak of a 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) that began in December 2019 in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, and has now spread to multiple countries, including the United States.

A new entry on this coronavirus outbreak has been added to the Red Book Online Outbreaks section, providing information about the outbreak and its impacts for the pediatric population.  The entry will be regularly updated, and recommendations may change as more is understood about the outbreak.

Overseen by members of the AAP Committee on Infectious Diseases, the Outbreaks section is intended to provide pediatric health care professionals with a quick resource to get up to speed on current outbreaks and how they affect children, along with links to explore further.

Non-medical Vaccine Exemptions FAQ

On June 13, 2019, legislation removing non-medical exemptions from school and child care immunization requirements was signed into New York State law, effective immediately.  All previously approved religious exemptions are now void.  Children are now required to be vaccinated to attend either:

  1. public, private, or parochial schools; or
  2. child care settings.

Children who had a religious exemption and who attend a year-round school or child care program must now have received the first age-appropriate dose in each immunization series by June 28, 2019, to attend or remain in school or child care.  Additionally, by July 14, 2019, parents and guardians must show that they have scheduled appointments for all required follow-up doses.  Children not in year-round programs will need to be vaccinated no later than 14 days after the first day of school or child care.

Please be aware that when California passed similar legislation there was an increase in medical exemption requests.  Providers should submit only valid medical exemption requests.  All medical exemptions are reviewed by physicians at the Health Department’s Office of School Health for students attending public school.  The Health Department will also be reviewing medical exemptions as part of the audits conducted at non-public schools and child care facilities and when requested by the school or facility.  We will be following this situation closely and tracking the number and patterns of medical exemptions.

All medical exemptions requests should use the form available on the Department of Education website at  Only physicians licensed in New York State can request a medical exemption.  The request must specify which vaccine(s), why the vaccine would be detrimental to the child’s health and the duration of the exemption.  All medical exemptions are required to be reviewed annually.  As guidance, a table summarizing valid contraindications and precautions to vaccines is available at

Please note that even if an unvaccinated child has serology demonstrating they are immune to measles due to infection acquired during the ongoing measles outbreak in New York City, they still need documentation of immunity to mumps and rubella.  They will therefore still need Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine, in addition to all other required immunizations.

As a reminder, the required school immunizations can be found at  Children who are delayed in their immunizations must be vaccinated in accordance with the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices catch-up schedule; see  Delays in vaccination or vaccine doses and/or alternative immunization schedules are not allowed.  Child care facilities and schools are required to exclude children who are not vaccinated on time and not in compliance with required immunizations.

Finally, we want you to be aware that the Health Department has received anecdotal reports of parents altering serology reports or submitting falsified vaccination records. We ask providers to be mindful of this and diligent in reviewing the validity of historic immunization records from parents, especially before these vaccines are submitted to the Citywide Immunization Registry (CIR) as historical immunizations.  The Health Department will investigate such reports when received and take appropriate action, if indicated.

For questions on the removal of the religious exemption, school and daycare immunization requirements, or any other vaccine-preventable disease issue, please call (347) 396-2400 or email  We thank you for your continuing efforts at protecting NYC residents from vaccine-preventable illnesses.

Each year about 90 New York State (NYS) infants die from sleep-related causes, many of which are preventable.  To eliminate sleep-related deaths in infants, the New York State (NYS) Department of Health (Department), in partnership with the NYS Office of Children and Family Services, has joined a national collaboration of state health departments, state agencies, and our professional and community partners.
The Department is working to update and deliver safe sleep messages to parents and caregivers across the state. In 2011, the Department adapted the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for educational materials related to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and safe sleep in a consumer brochure entitled “Follow the ABCs of Safe Sleep.”  The message is: Babies should sleep Alone, on their Backs, and in a safe Crib, right from the start.  The “ABC”
message is simple and effective to help introduce safe sleep basics to parents and caregivers.
A recent study showed the more often mothers heard advice about safe sleep practices, the more likely they were to follow the advice.   Please help to make this a reality by sharing safe sleep materials and education at every opportunity.  These materials, available in English and six other languages, are free of charge for your use.   Please visit for additional safe sleep information, including a brochure and poster that you can share with families in your practice.

The National Center for Medical Home Implementation (NCMHI), a cooperative agreement between the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of the Health Resources and Services Administration, published two new resources that may be of interest to AAP Chapter members:

  1.  State Pediatric Medicaid and CHIP Medical Homes Initiatives: At-a-Glance Table
    The National Center for Medical Home Implementation, in partnership with the National Academy for State Health Policy, recently updated its “State at-a-glance” table. The table provides an overview of publicly funded state programs that support the implementation and spread of the pediatric medical home model of care, including information on Health Home State Plan Amendments, and states that have active Medicaid payment for pediatric medical home programs.
  2. Language Access in Primary Care
    Created in partnership with the National Center for Cultural Competence, this article provides examples of language access services and strategies to enhance language access services in pediatric primary care practices.

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Integration Playbook, a new interactive guide to support the integration of behavioral health care in ambulatory care practices is now available on the AHRQ Academy for Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care portal.  The free guide provides tips, resources, and real-world examples of how practices are integrating behavioral health care, pitfalls to avoid; an interactive self-assessment checklist; and access to an online forum for peer-to-peer networking and sharing.  Visit the AHRQ Academy for Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care portal to access the Integration Playbook and other resources for integrating behavioral health care.

The National Center for Medical Home Implementation (NCMHI) in the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is pleased to announce the launch of its new and improved Web site,

The Web site provides pediatric medical home information, tools, and resources for practices and clinicians, specifically pediatricians. Visit the Web site to learn about the following:

  • Education and training opportunities
  • Tools and resources for pediatric medical home implementation
  • Evidence supporting the pediatric medical home model
  • Information about pediatric medical home initiatives in 50 states and the District of Columbia

SBIRT – Evidence-based screening to screen patients and identify those who use alcohol and other drugs at risky levels.

For Pediatricians in Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Fulton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Ulster, Warren and Washington Counties:

Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has funded the Epilepsy Foundation of NJ to improve access to services for children and youth with epilepsy.  A primary component of this improvement is the proposed pediatric practice training Improving Accurate Diagnosis & Treatment of Epilepsy: A Training for Pediatric Practice Teams.  This training will be  offered through a tri-state effort including territories in New Jersey, Northeastern New York, and Connecticut.  The training will be presented by a pediatric neurologist, Epilepsy Foundation affiliate staff, and a parent partner in each region to ensure the proper education is given.  The training will allow for pediatric practice team members to learn more about seizure recognition, diagnosis, treatment, and improved coordination of care and communication among providers.  This will be a great opportunity for pediatricians and the other members of the practice to receive updated information on the care for children with epilepsy.   Additional involvement will include basic data collection, identifying patients in the practice with epilepsy, completing pre- and post-surveys, as well as monthly technical assistance calls surrounding this project.  Maintenance of Certification  is pending for this project, or a monetary incentive will be offered for participation.

If you are interested in scheduling or finding out more about this training please contact:
Meghan Carnowski
Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern New York
518-456-7501, or

Get Smart: Know When Antibiotics Work

Many antibiotics prescribed in doctors’ offices, clinics, and other outpatient settings are not needed.  This program sponsored by the CDC focuses on appropriate prescribing and use for common illnesses in children and adults.  Resources include:

In addition, the MMWR has recently published a report related to antibiotic prescribing and patient desire for antibiotics, “Antibiotic Prescribing among Adult Consumers, Adult Hispanic Consumers, and Health Care Providers.”

Link to AAP Practice Transformation Tools – How to Build a Medical Home Practice Today…

The National Center for Medical Home Implementation (NCMHI) in the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is excited to announce the launch of a brand new online resource guide, “Building Your Medical Home: An Introduction to Pediatric Primary Care Transformation” available at

The guide provides direction, resources, and tools to pediatric medical home clinicians and practices seeking to advance their knowledge and understanding of the medical home concept as it relates to practice transformation. The guide provides resources and strategies for starting medical home transformation, integrating key functions of a medical home into practice, and sustaining changes.

Preparticipation Physicals

There are over 7.6 million high school athletes in the United States, and at some point each one of them is going to need a preparticipation physical evaluation (PPE).  Do you know what to do and how to do it?  Click here

Having Problems Getting Medicaid Managed Care Prescriptions Filled?  Read on to get help from the NYSDOH!

Each Medicaid Managed Care plan has been assigned a New York State Department of Health (DOH) pharmacist for the purpose of working collaboratively to resolve issues.  DOH staff will address both general issues and member/provider specific issues with the specific Medicaid Managed Care plan.

Please contact the DOH with questions, concerns, or if you are experiencing difficulty with a plan:
Phone:  518-486-3209

The New York State Department of Health staff will assist you in contacting the plan and working towards resolutions of your issues.

 Pediatric First Aid for Caregivers and Teachers (PedFACTs), developed by the dedicated Pediatrician members of the AAP, is a course for caregivers, teachers and others who care for children. The PedFACTs course focuses on what to do if a child in these individuals’ care suddenly becomes ill or gets injured. It is easy to implement, affordable, and based on the Caring for our Children standards.

As pediatricians with local practices, we appreciate your promotion and endorsement of this AAP resource in the communities where you practice. Some ways that you can raise awareness of the course include the following:

  • Community events, such as health fairs, at which you provide clinical guidance
  • Consultation with school and park districts
  • Talks you are invited to give about first aid and health promotion

After completing the course, participants will be able to do the following:

  • Recognize an ill or injured child.
  • Identify specific types of medical problems and give appropriate first aid care.
  • Know when to call emergency medical services (EMS).
  • Know how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
  • Understand what an automated external defibrillator (AED) does.
  • Know what to do when a child is choking.
  • Give rescue medication for a breathing problem.
  • Given an epinephrine auto-injector for a severe allergic reaction.

The PedFACTs course can be offered in two formatsOnsite and Hybrid:

Onsite Course

  • Students take an online pretest before the course.
  • Students attend a 4-hour classroom course.
  • All content is presented by a PedFACTs instructor.
  • Students take a written final examination.

Hybrid Course

  • Students take an online pretest before the course.
  • Students learn course content via self-directed online modules (about 2 hours).
  • Students take an online final examination.
  • Students attend a 2-hour classroom course for hands-on skills practice and instructor interaction.

To learn more about PedFACTs, visit the website at On the site you will be able to find an instructor or locate a course, as well as learn about the qualifications to become an instructor to teach the course.

AAP EBCD Training and Education Modules Are Now Available!

The AAP Early Brain and Child Development (EBCD) Leadership Workgroup is pleased to announce the availability of 5 new training and education modules for pediatricians and other health care providers. These modules provide key information and resources on the following early brain development topics:

  • Module 1: Building Better Brains – The Core Story of EBCD
  • Module 2: Toxic Stress – Why Environment Matters
  • Module 3: Adverse Childhood Experiences – What Happens Early can Change Lives
  • Module 4: Supporting Parents and Cultivating Community Relationships
  • Module 5: EBCD Advocacy – An Opportunity to Change Childhood Outcomes

These modules are freely accessible and are designed to be flexible and adaptable to a variety of training needs, both for individual learners and group presentations.

To access these modules, visit

National Institute CME Courses

The number of prescriptions filled for opioid pain relievers has increased dramatically, leading the CDC to identify prescription drug abuse a problem of “epidemic” proportions.  To better equip family physicians, pediatricians, and other health professionals against this crisis, the National Institute on Drug Abuse offers two free online CMEs/CEs:

  1. Safe Prescribing for Pain (1.25 credits) teaches the prevalence of prescription opioid abuse and explores ways to effectively screen for and prevent abuse in patients with pain.
  2. Managing Pain Patients Who Abuse Rx Drugs (1.75 credits) identifies the prevalence of opioid addiction and dependence in patients with chronic pain, and assists health care providers in identifying emerging abuse behaviors.

Announcing the NEW!

The Genetics in Primary Care Institute is pleased to announce the launch of their new Web site, This site houses practical tools and information for pediatric primary care providers (PCPs) regarding genetics and genomics, genetic testing, family history, genetic counseling, and patient communication. Visit our Provider Education page for resources, webinars, and live educational activities, including the upcoming Dive into the Gene Pool Conference. Explore the role of pediatric primary care providers in the provision of genetic medicine with the new Genetic Medicine & Primary Care Infographic.

Additional informational resources include:

  • Video testimonials from experts providing insight and a variety of perspectives on genetic-related topics including genetic testing, family history, and genetic counseling.
  • The What’s New page provides visitors with current and recently released policy statements, articles, online resources, and events
  • The archived Time Out for Genetics webinar series is housed in the Provider Education section of the site and provides 30 minute overviews on genetic topics relevant to pediatric primary care providers. Each webinar in this series has a companion fact sheet that offers a brief summary of the information presented in each webinar.
  • The 2013 Integrating Genetics into Your Practice webinar series is scheduled to kick off on June 6 at 12pm Central with the first webinar on Family History in Primary Care. Registration for these 60-minute educational webinars will be available on the GPCI Webinars page of the site in the coming weeks.
  • Within the Patient Management and Guidelines page there are a number of resources available for PCPs to access and utilize in their everyday practice including a list of management guidelines for patients with genetic and genetic-related conditions, a “How-To” handout on building a genetic patient registry, and guides on the creation of both emergency and transition plans
  • Pediatricians are invited to participate in a cutting edge conference, Dive into the Gene Pool: Integrating genetics and genomics into your pediatric primary care practice, to be held on August 9-10 in Chicago. Visit to Dive into the Gene Pool this summer!

New Children’s Electronic Health Record Format Announced

A new database developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality with support from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services can help software developers create better Electronic Health Records (EHRs) for the care of children.  The children’s EHR format establishes a blueprint for EHRs to better meet the needs of health care providers and pediatric patients by combining best-practices in clinical care, information technology, and insights from experts in children’s health.  Since few EHRs have been created with children’s needs in mind, gaps in functionality, data elements and other areas tend to occur.  The format guides EHR developers in understanding the requirements for functionality, data standards, usability and interoperability of an EHR system to more optimally support the provision of health care to children – especially those enrolled in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  The format is readily accessible and adoptable by EHR developers for use during product development or enhancement.

In addition to providing guidance to developers, the format can provide guidance for EHR system purchasers and policy makers.  For example, policy makers and purchasers can use the requirements when assessing functionality of EHRs. For more information or to access the format, select:

New York Initiative for Children of Incarcerated Parents

The New York State Medicaid Managed Care Information Website, developed in partnership with the State University of New York at Stony Brook, is intended to provide easy access for members and providers looking for information on the drugs and supplies covered by different Medicaid and Family Health Plus managed care health plans.   In the near future, the Department plans to release phase two of the project, which will allow interactive comparison of coverage searches.   The Pharmacy Benefit Information Website is available at:

AAP, District II, NYS formally supports New York City’s Initiative in Support of Breastfeeding.  The New York City initiative tracks with AAP policy supporting breastfeeding for all healthy babies and mothers. [Click here for more…]


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