In one of these lives, I am worried that the Federal government will shut down yet again in January, making it impossible for the grants my faculty and trainees submit to be reviewed or funded; making it questionable how and whether funding for resident physicians, medical student loan repayment, and pediatric dialysis units will continue at that time; and making it even less certain within what national health care infrastructure we must continue to serve the very best interests of the children and families of our region.
In the other of these lives, I meet with each of the University of Rochester medical students hoping to enter the field of pediatrics and am thrilled with their intelligence, their humanity, their passion; I hear our current residents discuss a patient they admitted to the hospital just last night and, even with but a couple of hours of sleep, they floor me with their evidence-based and compassionate rationale for arriving at a diagnosis, a treatment, and a presentation that will get the family through their difficult ordeal; I spend a long weekend at a national meeting with several of our junior faculty and am exceedingly proud of the way they present their research findings to the audience and field tough questions with thoughtfulness and creativity.
The difficult economics and politics and interpersonal dynamics of the day run the risk of obscuring all of the many things of which we are proud and the many people who, day after day, put children and families first. We cannot let our political and corporate differences pull us apart. We cannot put resources into fueling our disagreements. We must channel every ounce of our energy into providing the best opportunities – for good health, for mission-critical skills, for a sense of belonging and a sense of importance – to our children and families.
In the pages that follow, you will read both about people who give of themselves for the good of our children and families and about children and families who face adversity with dignity, humor, and generosity to others. We are so very fortunate to be surrounded by people like this. Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong represents your chance to join the ranks of those who care, those who give, and those who work for children, for families, for the biomedical workforce, and for those who will care for them and make their lives better in the future. Please, help us build our new “home” and help us fill it with the services, training programs, and research that will keep our children healthy and strong for generations to come!
With very best wishes,
Nina F. Schor, MD, PhD