California pediatricians take
on vaccine opponents and win
by Melissa Jenco •
News Content Editor
As California state Sen. Richard J. Pan, M.D., M.P.H., FAAP,
fought to toughen California’s
vaccine laws, his fellow pediatricians’ commitment to advocacy
was put to the test.
They didn’t let him down.
On June 30, Gov. Jerry Brown
signed a law removing personal
belief and religious exemptions
from the vaccine mandates for
“This is not a fight for the
faint-hearted, and I know that
the pediatricians here in California were very active, very strong
and they stood up and had my
back,” said Dr. Pan, who now is
challenging physicians around the country to take
up the cause.
Photo courtesy of the office of state Sen. Richard J. Pan
California state Sen. Richard J. Pan, M.D., M.P.H., FAAP, relied on a
network of pediatricians, parents and educators to help strengthen the
state’s vaccine law.
been a years-long undertaking. In 2012, he successfully shepherded a law that required families to talk
with a health care provider before receiving a personal
For him, the effort to increase vaccination rates has
See California, page 4
Love of learning defines new CEO Dr. Karen Remley
by Alyson Sulaski Wyckoff • Associate Editor
One of the family photographs on display in
the office of Karen L. Remley, M.D., M.B.A.,
M.P.H., FAAP, holds special meaning for the
new AAP executive director/CEO.
In the photo, Dr. Remley’s late father is
holding up his daughter to get a drink at a
water fountain. She cherishes the image.
“Time with Dad alone was precious,” said
Dr. Remley, who grew up in a family of five
girls, each 15 months apart. “You always
appreciated that one-on-one attention. My
father was my biggest champion, one of the
people who gave me unconditional love, unconditional support.”
Dr. Remley went on to forge a career in
pediatric emergency medicine and held numerous leadership roles in the health care field,
most recently as chief medical director of Virginia’s largest health insurer. She started at the
Academy on July 13.
A pediatric emergency medicine specialist, AAP Executive
Director/CEO Karen L. Remley, M.D., M.B.A., M.P.H., FAAP,
has held many leadership positions in health care.
common woes faced by his girls as they were growing
up often included a hug and the suggestion, “Let’s go
read a book.”
Dr. Remley calls herself a lifetime learner. Her father passed along a love of books and reading. The
family laughs because his remedy for some of the
She took that to heart and still reads all the time.
Her husband teases her “because every morning I
have my Kindle when I blow-dry my hair.
Chapters’ Views and News
Caring for immigrant
children: one year
after the surge
from the AAP Department of Community,
Chapter and State Affairs
Last summer, an unprecedented number of immigrant children fled to the United States across
the Southwestern border, some traveling with parents and many making the journey alone. Fleeing
violence and poverty in Central America, more
than 60,000 children were resettled with sponsors
in nearly every state.
One year later, thousands of children continue
to wait for a hearing in immigration court and
the opportunity to gain legal relief.
While the story of immigrant children has
largely disappeared from national news, pediatricians and other professionals who care for children have maintained a deep concern for their
health and well-being. Many of the children have
experienced trauma and are unable to access the
services they need to cope with complex health,
legal and education needs.
To discuss these issues, the Academy recently
brought together more than 40 service providers
for a meeting in Washington, D.C. Physicians,
lawyers, social workers, educators and advocates
shared challenges and identified opportunities to
collaborate to meet the needs of immigrant children in local communities.
Medical, legal advocacy
Alan J. Shapiro, M.D., FAAP, co-founder and
medical director of Terra Firma, a medical-legal
partnership program for unaccompanied immigrant children, emphasized the challenges that the
youth face after they are resettled into communities.
“After making the 2,000-mile journey to the
U.S., these children face a second stressful journey
through the American legal system and adjusting
to their new communities once released from Office of Refugee Resettlement shelters,” Dr. Shapiro said. “Medical and mental health providers
See Chapters, page 4
In this issue
Be informed before voting in the AAP election. Learn president-
elect candidates’ thoughts on improving U.S. immunization rates
and review biographies of district officer candidates. Voting runs
Oct. 10 to Nov. 10. Pages 17-21