Elective Rotation

Elective Rotation

The Elective in Child Advocacy allows a resident to focus in-depth on a chidren's health issue of choice, with appropriate clinical and advocacy experiences tailored to facilitate a greater understanding of the issue. The possibilities are endless: rural health, access to care, immigrant/refugee health, oral health, public policy issues, just to name a few.

The elective increases resident community involvement and provides training in various aspects and skills of child advocacy. The month culminates with a Noon Conference presentation by the resident on the issue pursued.

The elective may take many forms, including development and implementation of a community project, a research project related to advocacy, pursuing a public health policy in depth, or other appropriate experiences.

Activities and Requirements for the Rotation

  1. The resident will attend one or more weekly clinics targeted towards a chosen advocacy population (e.g., refugee clinic, international adoption clinic, Charlottesville Free Clinic, renal specialty clinic, etc.)

  2. The resident and preceptor will arrange a different “shadowing” experience each week to broaden exposure to the different components of an advocacy issue (e.g., the International Rescue Committee, adoption agencies, school nurses, social case workers, administrators/attorneys who deal with relevant legal and policy issues, school liaisons, dialysis nurses, etc.).

  3. The resident will choose a bill relating to children’s health and follow it through the Virginia General Assembly, learning to track it on the LIS website, and attending the appropriate committee meeting(s) for the bill and/or the subsequent House or Senate vote on that bill in Richmond.

  4. The resident will develop an outline proposal for future pediatric resident advocacy experiences that focus on the targeted advocacy issue and will propose and/or update a competency component for the targeted advocacy issue for our outpatient pediatric training rotation.

  5. The resident will develop a list of resources that can be disseminated to individuals interested in the advocacy issue.

  6. At the end of the month, the resident will present a Noon Conference that provides a current synopsis of the topics and challenges associated with the targeted advocacy issue, including the information gathered and prepared in #4 and #5 above.

  7. The resident will meet weekly with the preceptor to discuss his/her progress in meeting the goals of the elective.

  8. The resident must meet with the preceptor at least two months in advance to organize and pre-schedule the specific activities for the elective month.


Interested residents should contact Dr. Diane Pappas, Director of Child Advocacy, at childadvocacy@virginia.edu, to discuss requirements of the elective and development of an elective month to further pursue their own interests related to pediatric health and advocacy.