Lee Savio Beers, M.D., F.A.A.P., medical director of Community Health and Advocacy at the Child Health Advocacy Institute (CHAI) at Children’s National Hospital and president of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), delivered the President’s Address to AAP members around the world and held a keynote conversation with Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles about mental health during AAP’s National Conference and Exhibition.
After being introduced by her children, Charlotte and Jonah, Dr. Beers thanked AAP members around the world for their ability to adapt and provide quality care to patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. “The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our collective calculus of uncertainty, yet you continue to adapt and adjust to provide quality care in your clinics, emergency departments, ICU’s and exam rooms,” said Dr. Beers.
Dr. Beers continued by reflecting on accomplishments that AAP members and volunteers were able to achieve over the last year including the establishment of community immunization efforts, interim guidance provided on numerous pandemic-related issues and bi-weekly COVID-19 townhalls and educational sessions.
Shortly after her address, Dr. Beers sat down with Simone Biles to discuss the importance of advocating for mental health as an athlete.
During their conversation, Biles discussed the importance of making her mental health a priority by withdrawing from several events during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. She reflected on the outpouring support she received and how it made her feel.
Biles also offered advice for youth dealing with mental health issues and stressed the importance of reaching out to parents or peers so they can get the help and support they need.
AAP’s National Conference and Exhibition, held from October 8 through October 11, serves as an opportunity to keep pediatric providers abreast of the latest best practices in pediatrics and strives to meet participants’ identified educational needs and support their life-long learning with a goal of improving care for children and families.
Speaker and presentation information can be found here.