The Family and Medical Leave Act of 19931 and a growing number of state laws will have an impact on training programs and their policies regarding parental leave for pediatric residents. As an advocate for children and their families, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) supported the Family and Medical Leave Act and is concerned with the need to ensure healthy outcomes for pediatricians and their families. In accord with its expertise in the areas of child development and family dynamics, the Academy is committed to the development of rational, equitable, and effective parental leave policies that enable parents to spend adequate and good quality time with their new children.
At least half of all female physicians are having their first children during their residency or fellowship training years.2,3 Furthermore, an increasing number of male residents are requesting parental leave to spend more time with their newborns. In 1989, a position statement on parental leave for residents by the American College of Physicians noted the increasing number of residents having children and raised concerns about both the health outcomes of the children and the emotional outcomes of their parents.4 The AAP believes that each residency training program should establish specific written guidelines on parental leave to address these concerns. Most program directors, however, have preferred to deal with the circumstances of each pregnancy leave on an individual basis. In 1990, the American Medical Association adopted a policy on maternity leave for residents.5
- Copyright © 1995 by the American Academy of Pediatrics