American Academy of Pediatrics - California Chapter 2
Grant Christman, MD, MACM, FAAP

2024 June Edition

President's Message

This will be my last newsletter entry as president of California Chapter 2. It has been a great honor to serve you in this role! On July 1, current vice president Dr. Melissa Ruiz will become chapter president. I know that Dr. Ruiz will be an outstanding president and that, under her leadership, the chapter will continue to lead the way in developing programs to support pediatricians and improve health care for children in our region.

In the last newsletter, I wrote about our chapter election that takes place every two years. The results are in—congratulations to our new 2024-26 board! I would like to thank everyone who ran for a position as well as our members who took the time to review candidate statements and vote in the election. I would also like to thank immediate past president and chapter nominating committee chair Dr. Rajasekhar for carrying out a successful election. 

Dr. Mitchell Goldstein will be serving as our new vice president, which means he will also assume the role of president in 2026. See below for more details of the election and full results for all offices.

This month’s newsletter also contains two reports on the annual Sacramento legislative conference hosted by AAP California. Pediatric residents, advocacy faculty, and AAP leaders from across the state took part in educational programs, heard addresses from government officials, and visited with legislators and their staff to discuss our positions on key bills.

This event takes place every May and is the cornerstone of our state-level legislative advocacy efforts. If you are interested in legislative advocacy, look out for the conference announcement for 2025. We would love to expand chapter participation in the conference and engage more members like you in legislative advocacy, so please consider attending next year.

I am excited to announce that we have been awarded the Healthy People 2030 Grant, supported by the AAP Friends of Children fund. The grant will fund the production of a podcast series on child health and pediatric issues in AAP District IX (California). Chapter 2 will lead a collaboration among the four California AAP chapters to produce this podcast series. Our innovative format will include segments on child healthcare and advocacy for pediatricians, stories about pediatric career paths for trainees and early career pediatricians, and useful facts for parents and families looking to keep their children safe and healthy.

In the Trainees’ Corner, we are continuing to showcase the research poster presenters of the 2024 Symposium.

I would like to welcome our new chapter members and encourage them to get involved by joining a chapter committee. Information about our committees and other resources are available on our website, Your support makes the work of this chapter possible!

Be on the lookout for future announcements of chapter events taking place in July and August. I hope you have a great summer!


Best wishes,


Grant Christman, MD, MACM, FAAP

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Chapter Elections

2024 - 2026 AAP-CA2 Board of Directors 

Election Results

The AAP-CA2 Nominating Committee is pleased to report the results of our Board of Directors election. This past May, voting members had the opportunity to vote for the positions of Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Members-at-Large. Melissa Ruiz, MD, FAAP will transition into AAP-CA2 president, with Grant Christman, MD, MACM, FAAP moving into the position of immediate past president. 

On our 2024-2026 executive board, I would like to congratulate and welcome Mitchell Goldstein, MD, FAAP as the new AAP-CA2 vice president/president elect, Kimberly Petko, MD, MPH, FAAP as secretary, and Ilan Shapiro, MD, MBA, FAAP as treasurer. Members-At-Large for the next term are Cindy Baker, MD, FAAP; Lingie Chiu, MD, MBA, FAAP, DipABLM; Ozlem Equils, MD, FAAP; Ilona Kleiner, MD, FAAP; Mia Lagunda, MD, FAAP; Gifty-Maria Jane Ntim, MD, MPH, FAAP; Anthony Moretti, MD, MBA, FAAP; Gabrielle Pina, DO, FAAP, Andy Saxon, MD, FAAP; and Joshua Sherman, MD, FAAP.

Area Representatives will be announced in our next newsletter as they are appointed by the Chapter president.

Congratulations to all!



D. Rajasekhar, MD, FAAP (Chair)

Alice Kuo, MD, MBA, FAAP

Edward Curry, MD, FAAP

The AAP-CA2 Nominating Committee consists of the last 3 past presidents, with the immediate past president serving as chair of the committee.

AAP-CA2 to Produce Podcast Series

AAP-CA2 Awarded Healthy People 2030 Grant

Grant-supported activities will address social media as a real tool in pediatrics

We are proud to announce that our chapter was awarded a $25,000 grant for the Healthy People 2030 program, supported by the AAP Friends of Children fund. This fund supports vital Academy efforts to meet children's needs through education, research, community service, and advocacy programs, through the utilization of social media in pediatrics during the next 24 months. Specifically, AAP-CA2 will produce a podcast titled “District IX Pediatrics”, and will work in collaboration with chapters 1, 3 and 4 to seek content and for state-wide promotion. Initial episodes will address health and safety in schools, suicide ideation in LGBTQ teens, and reduction of violence related to firearms.

Healthy People is a national effort that sets goals and objectives to improve the health and well-being of people in the U.S. Healthy People 2030 is the fifth iteration focusing on critical health promotion and disease prevention topics.

Minimum Wage Increase

New health care worker minimum wage took effect June 1; IPAs and small physician practices exempt

On June 1, 2024, a new state law took effect that phases in minimum wage increases for health care workers (SB 525 – Durazo). Through California Medical Association (CMA) advocacy, SB 525 was amended to exempt medical group practices of 24 or fewer physicians and IPAs. Read more...

Anti-vaping QI Project | $750 + MOC Credit

Participate in Quality Improvement with Anti-Vaping Champions at UCLA!

AAP-CA2, in collaboration with Anti-Vaping Champions at UCLA, is recruiting practices interested in participating in a Quality Improvement project. The focus is to incorporate vaping screening, counseling, and treatment referrals during visits for pediatric patients.

25 points of ABP MOC Part 4 credit

$750 at the end of the 4th cycle

  • Baseline Data Collection (10 random charts)
  • Three PDSA Cycles + Data Collection
  • Monthly QI/data review calls

Please contact or complete this Interest Form.

State Advocacy - 2024 Legislative Day

Pediatricians, pediatric residents, medical students and staff attended the annual Legislative Day in Sacramento this past May 14th, organized by AAP-CA with the support of Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4.

Report From Sacramento

Will Barboza (AAP-CA2 Administrative Assistant)

After a year of working for the AAP-CA2, I’ve learned that nailing down the primary mission of this organization isn’t so simple. Like the human body, the chapter has many different parts. The chapter provides continuing education materials, social connections in a sometimes isolating industry, and even activist opportunities. However, one of the areas that can often be lost in the shuffle of amazing accomplishments the chapter strives to achieve, is its dedication to advocacy. Read More

Report From Sacramento

Kimberly Petko, MD, MPH, FAAP (AAP-CA2 Executive Board Secretary)

Attending AAP Advocacy Day in Sacramento alongside colleagues and trainees from our region was a fun and rewarding experience. This year's faculty meeting focused on advocacy education for pediatric residents, providing a valuable platform to exchange ideas and collaborate with educators statewide. Read More

(Top left) Jeanne Delgado, Kimberly Petko, Grant Christman, Scott Berkheimer, Priyanka Kosaraju, Shreya Aiyar and Brianna Leon discussing bills with Assemblymember Bryan’s staffer, Amy Ho. (Top right) Tomas Torices, Will Barboza with Senator Anthony Portantino.

(Bottom left) Tomas, Will, with Senator Caroline Menjivar. (Bottom right) Brayden Skousen, Alexandria Dietrich with Senator Ochoa Bogh’s staffer, Nicki Taylor.

AAP (National) Social Pedia Newsletter

June Social Pedia Newsletter

  • What's happening this month?

June is Pride Month. Plus information on June including National Gun Violence Awareness Day and Wear Orange Weekend. Also included are Summer safety tips and new information in the Vaccine Misinformation Update Corner.

Access all resources in This Month's Issue

AHRQ Safety Program for Telemedicine:

Improving Antibiotic Use

Is your pediatric practice interested in improving appropriate use of antibiotics in telemedicine? 

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is currently recruiting practices for a no-cost, 18-month program beginning in June 2024 to promote appropriate antibiotic use in telemedicine while improving patient and family satisfaction with antibiotic prescribing. Practices will learn directly from experts in infectious diseases, antibiotic prescribing, and tele-diagnosis and receive one-on-one coaching to implement sustainable improvements in the diagnosis and treatment of infectious syndromes over telemedicine, including those common in pediatrics such as otitis media. Participants will learn how to determine when an in-patient visit is needed, how to handle uncertainty in diagnosis over telemedicine, and how to communicate effectively with parents. Participating providers will be eligible for continuing education units (CEUs), continuing medical education (CME) credits, and American Board of Pediatrics maintenance of certification (MOC) points.

Learn more and sign up for an informational webinar on the program website:

Download Flier Here


Symposium Research Poster Presenters

The Impact of Sleep on Breastmilk Quality

Zayan Musa, B.S. (UCR)

Breastfeeding is a sensitive and critical process that can simultaneously impact a breastfeeding mother and the child. Previous research has shown the impacts of sleep, stress, and anxiety on breastfeeding and the well-being of a new mother (Tikotzky & McQuillan). However, there has been no significant research on how sleep affects breastfeeding quality and quantity (Kim). By linking these two factors directly, this study can provide significant insight towards improving child nutrition and maternal health through good sleep hygiene. Read More!

Reducing Weight Stigma with a Lifestyle Check Toolkit for Pediatric Residents: A Quality Improvement Project

Maria Yao, MD (UCLA)

The Lifestyle Check Toolkit was derived from a weight bias curriculum received by second year pediatric residents in the primary care track at UCLA, a literature review of evidenced based lifestyle interventions for pediatric obesity, and in consultation with a pediatric obesity medicine specialist. The Lifestyle Check Toolkit includes a 25 minute self study PowerPoint with information about the complexity of pediatric obesity and the negative health effects of weight stigma. Read More!

Zayan Musa, B.S. (UCR)

Maria Yao, M.D. (UCLA)

We'll Come To Your School or Hospital

Dear Medical Schools and Pediatric Residency Programs in AAP California Chapter 2, 

Are you interested in learning more about local advocacy efforts? Do you want to hear more about getting involved in AAP California Chapter 2? If yes, then please consider inviting our chapter leadership to your local pediatric interest group meeting, pediatric residency noon conference, or any other gathering. Our chapter leadership wants to connect with the trainees in the area so reach out to to schedule an event at your medical school / residency program!

Member Spotlight

The Member Spotlight is written to highlight our chapter membership. Chapter members can submit personal narratives about themselves with a focus on how they maintain their physician wellness in the face of everyday struggles and challenges. Authors may also choose to highlight a practice, volunteer activities, QI projects, etc. The purpose of the spotlight series is to encourage and foster unity and support within the chapter.

Please complete THIS FORM to be considered for a future Member Spotlight in the AAP-CA2 Newsletter!


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If you enjoy community-based pediatrics and are seeking a long-term flexible position, please apply by sending a cover letter and CV to:

  • Full time salary: $225,000-260,000 (equivalent to ~$120-140 per hour)
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Reach Out & Read Inland Empire

Strengthening Partnership to Promote Literacy with Kaiser Permanente

By Delesa Barnes

Reach Out and Read Inland Empire Program Coordinator

In a monumental step towards expanding its reach and effectiveness, Reach Out and Read Inland Empire (RORIE) has successfully strengthened its relationship with Kaiser Permanente, a leading healthcare provider in the region. Recognizing the critical role they play in the lives of families in Southern California, RORIE has provided support for leaders at twelve Kaiser Permanente facilities in San Bernardino County. Read more

LAC DPH | Vaccine Preventable Diseases Control Program

June Update  

This month’s immunization newsletter includes immunization updates and resources for back-to-school preparation to get children caught up on routine and school required vaccines. Save the date for our upcoming Pediatric Information Session on Tuesday, July 2, 2024, from 12-1pm, the session will provide updates on Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and Adolescent Substance Use.

View the full update, plus upcoming events, here.

Welcome New Chapter Members

Welcome NEW members who joined the chapter in May.

Thank you for your support!

Zvart Abaryan, MD - Van Nuys

Stanford Chun, MD, FAAP - Temple City

Kathleen Nelson, MD, FAAP - Los Angeles

Pamela Roper, MD, FAAP - Inglewood

Scott Witt, MD, FAAP - Atascadero

Saba Ahmed - Colton

Maanne Gonzales-Ortega, MD - Temecula

Tamia Jones - Los Angeles

Ariana Kaxon-Rupp - Fresno

Mariam Nguyen - Los Angeles

Krishna Sankara - Los Angeles

Rishi Sinha - Los Altos

GDSP| Newborn Screening Program - Newsletter

The California Newborn Screening (NBS) Program is a public health program that screens all babies for many serious but treatable genetic disorders. Effective July 22, 2024, the California Newborn Screening (NBS) Program screening panel will include Guanidinoacetate Methyltransferase (GAMT) and Mucopolysaccharidosis Type II (MPS II).

Read the NBS Newsletter

Newborn screening began in California in 1966 with screening for one disorder, called phenylketonuria (PKU). The NBS Program has expanded and now includes 80 different disorders, both genetic (passed down in families) and congenital (present at birth). 

Visit the site here

Gasol Foundation | Free Programs for kids 6 - 12

Gasol Foundation (founded by NBA Champions Pau and Marc Gasol) is a nonprofit that works through programming, research, advocacy, and awareness to promote children’s wellness, with a focus on eliminating childhood obesity.

Every Gasol Foundation program incorporates physical activity and sports, healthy eating, sleep, and emotional well-being to improve the health of our children and their overall development. 

The Galactic Sports program consists of basic sports skills and wellness lessons for children ages 6-12. The program takes children through 10 weekly one-hour lessons in a sport (basketball, track and field, or soccer) while also engaging them on the importance of healthy habits.


AAP | Research in Office Settings (PROS)

We are still recruiting parents/teens for HEART+ teen suicide prevention focus group conversations!

If you are a pediatric primary care practice with no embedded/co-located mental health services and able to refer 2-4 parents/teens to 1-hour virtual focus group conversations, contact Ali Torres, We are conducting focus groups through July 2024 at a time convenient to families. Each focus group participant gets $50 and each referring practice gets $250.

Health professionals across Michigan are taking the AAP PROS-developed and -tested HPV Communication Skills Training. Over 215 health professionals (in Vaccines For Children programs, School-based/School-linked Health Centers, FQHCs) have completed the HPV Communication Skills Training since the training’s launch in Michigan mid-May 2024.

We are engaging in ongoing PROS Strategic Planning. We are working throughout 2024 to update PROS so that it remains contemporary—what do studies look like now and what will they look like in the next 10 years given clinical priorities and primary care practice structures today and tomorrow?

Questions? Contact Everly Macario, ScD, Director of Primary Care Research, AAP,

Recent Events

May 8th. - Peds in the SGV

AAP-CA2 Member-At-Large Niru Madduri, MD, FAAP hosted Peds in the SGV, the inaugural dinner/lecture for pediatricians in the San Gabriel Valley. This event took place on May 8th at Bistro 45 in Pasadena. Sonal Patel, MD, an Allergist with Adventist Health Pediatrics, discussed Dupixent, followed by a discussion and sharing of top cases seen in clinic. Local pediatricians and several USC medical students were in attendance.

May 9th. - AAP-CA2 Social in Santa Barbara

Pediatricians, allied health professionals and city officials attended the Santa Barbara county chapter social, hosted by Area Representative Dr. Brian Santacrose on May 9th, at 10 West Gallery, a contemporary fine art gallery located in the heart of downtown Santa Barbara. These events are great opportunities for chapter members to network with colleagues, legislators, school and city representatives. This event marked the last event of a series of road trips gathering members in each of the seven counties we serve. We look forward to seeing you at the next event.

10 West is a contemporary fine art gallery located in the heart of downtown Santa Barbara just 1/2 block from the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. The gallery specializes in Santa Barbara and regional artists.

Upcoming Events

July 2 | Pediatric Provider Information Session: Pediatric Immunization and Overview of Adolescent Substance Use

This webinar will provide updates on Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and Adolescent Substance Use. The event will be hosted July 2nd at 12PM.

Register Here

Watch on our YouTube Channel
Fridays - Miller Children's Grand Rounds
Pediatric Grand Rounds
Fridays at 8 AM

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 924 5224 4153
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  • Help Me Grow LA website: 
  • Help Me Grow LA Call Center phone number: (833) 903-3972 
You can help improve the system by partnering with Help Me Grow LA to make sure all young children in your care are supported and provided resources to benefit their development. 
Contact Help Me Grow LA leadership via email: We look forward to working with you!

Membership Options | Large Groups
Enterprise Membership - Did you know?
Signing up your entire practice (clinical and non-clinical staff) qualifies for a 20% discount on Chapter membership dues. Contact us for details.
Los Angeles County Immigrant Youth Resource Toolkit

The Immigrant Youth Task Force (IYTF) at UCLA and the American Academy of Pediatrics California Chapter 2 (AAP-CA2) invite you to visit The Los Angeles County Immigrant Youth Resource Toolkit, a website consolidating community resources in the greater LA area for immigrant youth and families. Our goal is to help professionals from all disciplines address the needs of their immigrant youth patients/clients with regards to health care, legal services, education, social services, and more. As our toolkit continues to evolve, we encourage you to explore and use it in your practice going forward.
Chapter Committees and Sections
Chapter committees are great opportunities to get involved in areas that interest you the most. Furthermore, if you are a Fellow member (FAAP), local involvement could position you for leadership opportunities at National AAP. To learn more about our various Committees and Sections, and to sign up, please visit

Advertise in Our Newsletter
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AAP-CA2 publishes its electronic newsletter, Peds@CA2, which is emailed to its 1,500+ members on the second weekend every month. Chapter members and non-profit organizations receive a 50% discount. Please follow the link below for more information.

For advertisement rates and guidelines, please click here.
If you are interested in advertising, please email the Chapter.
Article Submissions
Article submissions will be reviewed on a rolling basis. The newsletter is published the second Sunday of each month.
Please view all Newsletter issues online at
You may direct questions and article submissions to the "American Academy of Pediatrics - CA Chapter 2" <>.

The AAP-CA2 Newsletter Editorial Review Board
Established in July 2020 to highlight educational content and resources of value to chapter members, and to showcase our chapter membership.
AAP-CA2 Board of Directors 2022-2024
Area Representatives

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