Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics


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COMSEP Meeting in Ottawa, ON

Poster Presentation:

Integrating Health Inequities into the Pediatric Clerkship

Christin Traba,Rutgers New Jersey Medical School,Newark,NJ,Jenny N. Rosen Valverde,Rutgers University School of Law - Newark,Newark,NJ


With health inequities recognized as a nationwide health concern, the focus has now shifted to developing comprehensive, interprofessional interventions to help reduce inequities. Physicians are a key part of this interprofesional team. Thus, it is imperative that we train future physicians to not only recognize health disparities/inequities but also provide them with strategies to reduce such inequities. The pediatric clerkship is a perfect fit for a health inequities curriculum.



  1. Recognize health disparities and the effects of social and environmental determinants of health on children
  2. Recognize the critical role of the pediatrician in identifying social and legal needs of patients and families that adversely impact child health
  3. Identify social and legal issues affecting the children and families served


A 5-question survey was completed by each student (N=20) in one pediatric clerkship rotation (estimated N=60 when poster presented). The rating scale ranged from “not at all” to a “great degree”. Overwhelmingly, students rated the orientation lecture to have met the above three objectives (100% to a moderate or great degree; 95%; and 95% respectively). Students were also asked to what degree the group discussion and reflection essay enhance their perspective regarding social determinants of health: 85% and 80% responded to a moderate or great degree.


Major strengths of the health inequities curriculum include overall easy maintenance of program, easily adaptable to other institutions, and use of small group discussions. In their assessment of the curriculum, the students had several ideas for improvement including: replacing reflection essay with required reading articles for discussion and addition of concrete ways students can become more involved. We also hope to integrate social work and/or law students into the small group discussions.