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July 2015

International Child Health Competencies

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Oncology, St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee
JAMA Pediatr. 2015;169(7):621-622. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.71

Well-guided, sustainable global health outreach partnerships have the potential for immense societal benefit, personal growth, and professional enhancement for pediatric trainees. Yet, international pursuits lacking a bioethical foundation risk harming medically underserved populations and learners. Determining ethical competency in overseas training efforts rests on whether the pursuit is one of clinical skills practice or one of purposeful praxis (reflective experiential learning). Aristotle honored praxis as the highest form of knowledge, a practical knowledge; later philosophers used praxis to describe a shift from mindful reflection to social improvement. We define international child health praxis as a mentored, ethical approach that acknowledges system barriers, strives for solidarity with local stakeholders, and partners with them toward population wellness.

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