|January 22, 2024
| Hi All,
I am thrilled to be your new NYS AAP District II Chair, and it has been an exciting few weeks! First, I would like to say thank you our District Vice Chair, Vanessa Salcedo, for her offers of help and her kindness. The Presidents and Vice Presidents of Chapters 1, 2, and 3 also all deserve great credit for working closely with me to help identify a replacement for Elie Ward (details below). And our Executive Directors, Jessica and Aimana, have been just terrific to work with too. And of course, I have benefitted greatly from Warren Seigel’s counsel and wisdom.
| I am very pleased to announce that Lauren Tobias, MPP, government relations and strategic planning consultant from Brown and Weinraub, will be helping to lead and coordinate our advocacy efforts across the Chapters. Lauren joined Brown and Weinraub as a Sr. Advisor, after serving as the Director of the Division of Family Health in the New York State Department of Health. In this role Ms. Tobias oversaw NYS’ initiatives aimed to improve and promote quality sexual and reproductive health services, perinatal health outcomes, and improve woman, infant, child, and adolescent health and well-being. Ms. Tobias created a health equity team to focus efforts on addressing racial disparities and support a racial justice framework for the Division’s initiatives.
Lauren has been working hard to help us with 2 new opportunities: the Medicaid 1115 Waiver announced January 9th which our advocacy helped to have a strong focus on children, including 0 to 6 years continuous coverage for children on Medicaid!; and the proposed NYS Budget on January 16th which has an increase in funding for Early Intervention and also increased funding for PCMH pediatric practices.
A few updates: Vanessa and I will be at national AAP headquarters this week for a Board meeting and orientation. We will resume our monthly NYS AAP Public Policy and Advocacy Committee Meetings on February 5th from 6:30pm – 7:30pm and continue them on the first Monday of each month at that time. All NY Chapter members are invited to come prepared to talk about 1 to 2 top advocacy priorities and also any legislation that you would like to have help tracking. Please contact Jessica Geslani at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to participate. We will be sharing updates and opportunities to advocate regarding the proposed NYS budget. We are working hard on arrangements for our Annual Advocacy Day in Albany, identifying speakers and a location– stay tuned for more information within the next week.
My best and my thanks for your continued commitment to our children and families.
Jeff Kaczorowski, MD FAAP
Chair, NYS AAP (District II)
Professor and Vice Chair University of Rochester/Golisano Children’s Hospital