February 8, 2023

President’s Letter from C. Buddy Creech – Clarity for February

During the pandemic, as we raced to roll out treatment trials and vaccine studies for COVID, our research team became very fond of the phrase, “clarity is kindness.” In that spirit, and in honor of our shortest month, I want to highlight a few things that are happening within PIDS that I think all our members should be aware of.

  1. Launch of a Fellowship Training Taskforce: During the January PIDS Board Meeting, the Directors approved the formation of a taskforce, chaired by Angie Myers (Children’s Mercy Hospital), that will ask key questions about fellowship training:
    • Do we have the best pedagogical approach?
    • Are there aspects of our training approach that are barriers to residents entering fellowship?
    • Should we consider additional specialization programs, such as antimicrobial stewardship, infection prevention, and care of the immunocompromised hosts?

The group has already been in close contact with the American Board of Pediatrics and with our adult ID colleagues so that we can recruit and train effectively.

  1. Efforts to Ensure Appropriate Compensation: David Hunstad (Washington University) will be leading our efforts, coordinated through the PIDS Division Directors Committee, to address two important issues with compensation and professional activities:
    • Defining compensation ranges within PIDS, to supplement what we know from AAMC and AAAP
    • Characterizing the ways in which clinical FTE is calculated

Rather than being prescriptive, we are focused at this stage on being descriptive in our approach.

  1. Multiple Opportunities for Funding: Please remember that there are multiple opportunities for fellows and faculty to receive research funding:
    • Stanley and Susan Plotkin and Sanofi Pasteur Fellowship Award (2 fellows)
    • PIDS-St. Jude Fellowship Award for Basic and Translational Science (1 fellow)
    • Health Disparities in Pediatric ID Fellowship Award (1 fellow)
    • National CMV Foundation Award (1 fellow)
    • Antimicrobial Stewardship Fellowship Awards (multiple awards)
    • PIDS SUMMERS Program (multiple students/trainees)
    • Pichichero Family Foundation Award (multiple awards available for faculty)

Please visit the PIDS Foundation website for more information on these awards.

  1. Upcoming Meetings: We are looking forward to the next few months as respiratory virus season slows and our meetings ramp up:
    • St. Jude/PIDS Conference in Memphis, TN on March 1-3
    • The Edwards Vaccinology and Infectious Diseases Symposium in Nashville, TN on April 17-18
    • The Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting in Washington, D.C. on April 27 – May 1
    • The European Society of Pediatric ID Society Meeting in Lisbon, Portugal on May 8-12

A more comprehensive list of opportunities can be found on the Meetings & Events tab at PIDS.com.

I think it’s safe to say that there is a lot going on with PIDS. We cannot do it without your membership; your engagement in committees, taskforces, webinars, and conferences; and your ongoing support of our journal, JPIDS. As always, if there is anything at all that you need from PIDS, please contact us any time.

Onward and upward!

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