The Pediatric AIDS Corps: A 5-Year Evaluation
BACKGROUND: The Baylor College of Medicine International Pediatric AIDS Initiative at Texas Children’s Hospital created a global health corps named the Pediatric AIDS Corps (PAC) in June 2005. This report provides descriptive details and outputs for PAC over its first 5 years.
METHODS: Demographic data were gathered about PAC physicians employed from July 2006 to June 2011. A 21-question survey was used to query PAC physicians about their experiences in the program. Data concerning clinical experiences and educational programs also were reviewed.
RESULTS: A total of 128 physicians were employed with PAC. The median duration served was 22.7 months. Eighty-seven percent indicated that experience affected their future career choice, with half continuing to work with children and families living in resource-limited areas after they left PAC. Patient care was identified as the most rewarding part of their work (73%), whereas deaths (27%) were the most difficult. Baylor College of Medicine International Pediatric AIDS Initiative enrollment of HIV-infected children and adolescents into care and treatment increased from 6107 to103 731 with the addition of PAC physicians. Approximately 500 local health care professionals per quarter benefited from HIV clinical attachments that were not available before PAC arrival. PAC physicians visited outreach sites providing in-depth HIV mentoring of local health care professionals, leading to 37% of the sites becoming self-sufficient.
CONCLUSIONS: The positive evaluation by the PAC and the scale-up of clinical and educational programs support the recent calls for the development of a national global health corps program.
- Accepted March 7, 2014.
- Copyright © 2014 by the American Academy of Pediatrics