1970s The In the 1970s, AAP reaffi rms mission, doubles membership, opens D.C. offi ce by Alyson Sulaski Wyckoff , Associate Editor Copyright © 2020 American Academy of Pediatrics Editor’s note: Th is is the sixth of a series of articles on the AAP’s 90th anniversary published by AAP News, (June, 2020). Th e 1970s continued the previous decade’s trend of tumultuous events, along with a rise in technological and medical advancements. Th ere were environmental, gay and women’s rights movements Watergate the Vietnam War an oil crisis high unemployment and urban poverty. Key medical fi rsts included the introduction of computerized axial tomography scans, magnetic resonance imaging, noninvasive fetal heart monitoring and antiviral drugs. Th e fi rst baby was born from in-vitro fertilization. Th e AAP opened an offi ce in Washington, D.C., in 1970, paving the way to increase the Academy’s infl uence on policy issues from child care to nutrition to health fi nancing. When the Lead-Based Paint Poisoning Prevention Act passed in 1971, it marked a singular success by pediatricians. A coordinated Speak Up for Children! campaign drew attention to accident prevention, nutrition, immunization and health education. Th e Academy substantially expanded public education, collaborating with organizations like Action for Children’s Television to produce guidance on television screen time. In a campaign sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the AAP and others launched Immunization Action Month in 1973 to highlight inadequate immunization levels among preschool children (https://bit.ly/2LfPm6x). Psychosocial issues In a 1974 address, AAP President James Gillespie, M.D., FAAP, reminded pediatricians of their “broadened responsibilities.” “Many of today’s patient problems stem from social mis- fortune—poverty, malnutrition, poor environment and lack of education—each of which aff ects the quality of life,” Dr. Gillespie said. “A brighter day for children is a national responsibility. Consequently, every aspect of society which bears on child health, be it medical, social or emotional, falls within the scope of Academy concern.” A few years later, AAP President David Van Gelder, M.D., FAAP, stated: “I believe we must be proactive rather than reactive I am proud that the Academy is perhaps the one organization in medicine that has most consistently adopted this attitude.” He told pediatricians that they work not for themselves but for the future: “Our civilization is going to be in the hands of the children we care for.” Pediatrics must expand to treat psychosocial conditions, said Robert J. Haggerty, M.D., FAAP, referencing “the new morbidi- ties” (https://bit.ly/3c6TwsV https://bit.ly/3fwcZ8M). He was the founding editor and longtime editor-in-chief of Pediatrics In Review, which began in 1979 (https://bit.ly/2L4NNrS). Th e 1970s also marked the fi rst time the Academy published a stand-alone Periodicity Schedule for well-child visits. Colorful promotional items in the archives of the AAP Gartner Pediatric History Center include Speak Up for Children! pins from a multifaceted child health advocacy campaign in 1978. uni24EE
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