Resident Education in Advocacy and Community Health (REACH)

Resident Education in Advocacy and Community Health (REACH) is an opportunity available to residents of the University of Connecticut Pediatric Residency Advocacy Program.

Our Mission

To foster the development of pediatricians who are committed to improving child health services through public policy and system reform, leading efforts to ensure that their practice communities and the health care environments in which they work are responsive to and proactive in meeting the needs of children and their families.

About REACH

REACH presents the University of Connecticut Pediatric Resident the unique opportunity to develop knowledge and skill in the areas of advocacy, community health, and public policy. As an integral member of the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center Office for Community Child Health, REACH works closely with experts in the fields of population health, community research, policy formation and social innovation, all toward the promotion of children’s healthy development.

The pediatric resident in the REACH pathway will work with experts in different types of community health, advocacy, policy and social change through a series of electives taken over three years. Additionally, each REACH resident will complete one of two available requirements: 

  • Completion of a project in community health and/or advocacy  OR
  • Completion of a mini-fellowship in policy

REACH is designed to offer a foundation in advocacy, while still affording the resident an opportunity to mold the experience toward his or her ultimate career goals. The knowledge and skills acquired are equally pertinent to future subspecialists, primary care physicians, hospitalists and critical care physicians. 

Recent Highlights

Residents in the REACH Pathway have obtained project funding through the competitive CATCH Resident Grant program of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Community Pediatrics Training Initiative.

Reach.jpgThe 2013-2014 project, Health Habits for Healthy Hartford Children, was led by Drs. Corinne Althauser and Kelli Collins, pictured here with parents from the Women’s League Child Care Center. Participants learned about healthy nutrition, exercise and other healthy habits in a series of interactive sessions. They also created informative daily health habit passports to bring to health supervision visits, to help the primary care provider better in giving better-targeted anticipatory guidance.

In the spring of their graduation year, REACH residents present their project at a dinner meeting that celebrates the work each resident has done through their CLE (Community Learning Experience, part of every resident’s residency education, regardless of pathway). 

Reach2.jpgThe picture to the right depicts fellow residents participating in the 2013 REACH resident project, Making Connections for Healthier Hartford Children. Here, a group of residents are teaching stretching exercises to young participants of the Parker Memorial Family Center after school program.