By Salina Sowell, Communication Coordinator

Adolescents are among those least likely to have access to health care, and they have the lowest rate of primary care use of any age group in the United States. The #StayWell practices are empowering adolescents to be actively engaged in their preventative health care and equip them with the knowledge and skills for a healthy transition into adulthood.

Physician Champion of the collaborative, Nola Ernest, MD, FAAP, shares why this particular collaborative is important to her as well as to pediatric offices that need to work together to provide excellent adolescent care.

Cason Benton, M.D., was featured in the American Board of Pediatrics 2018 Annual Report, speaking about cultivating a culture of QI. Dr. Benton was awarded the ABP 2018 Paul V. Miles (PVM) Fellowship Award. Read the entire annual report here

By Cason Benton, MD, FAAP, Medical Director, Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance

On November 12-13, 2018, the Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance hosted the National Improvement Partnership Network (NIPN) Annual Meeting at the Elyton Hotel in Birmingham, Alabama to share best ideas for improving outcomes with quality improvement. Children’s of Alabama CEO Mike Warren and Mitch Cohen, M.D., FAAP, UAB Department of Pediatrics Chair, welcomed the attendees. David Gremse, M.D., FAAP, USA Department of Pediatrics Chair, introduced the keynote speaker Cathy Caldwell, Director of ALL Kids, and participated in a panel on how Alabama’s child health improvement partners work together to close care gaps. Also on the panel were Robert Moon, M.D., Alabama Medicaid; Susan Coburn, Family Voices; Melinda Davis, Children’s Rehabilitation Services; Lori Moler, Children’s of Alabama; Katrina Trammell, M.D., FAAP, Gulf Coast Health Care; and Wes Stubblefield, M.D., FAAP, AL-AAP Chapter President. One participant wrote, “We are returning home inspired…the meeting was FABULOUS and we learned so much.”

This article first appeared in the Fourth Quarter 2018 Edition of the Alabama Pediatrician Newsletter. See full newsletter here.

By Cason Benton, MD, FAAP, Medical Director, Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance

staywell logo 3 002To increase adolescent well-visit rates, collaborative practices will assess and address offi ce “adolescent friendliness” as well as strengthen confi dentiality and transition to adult care approaches. From a “return on investment” viewpoint, #StayWell meets some payor incentives, aligns with Patient-Centered Medical Home (re)certifi cation competencies, and provides 25 points MOC IV (QI) and Continuing Medical Education/CEUs. But mostly, with Nola Ernest, MD, FAAP, as the Physician Champion, this collaborative will be fun and a great way to get the offi ce working together to deliver excellent adolescent care. The nine-month collaborative begins in January with most of the change ideas being MOC Approved Logo Part 4rolled out March through August. For questions, or to enroll now, contact Linda Champion at or 334-324-9307

This article first appeared in the Fourth Quarter 2018 Edition of the Alabama Pediatrician Newsletter. See full newsletter here.

By Cason Benton, M.D., FAAP, Medical Director, Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance

As announced earlier this summer, the Alabama Child Health Improvement Alliance’s (ACHIA) 2019 Collaborative #Stay Well: An Adolescent Well Visit Learning Collaborative, will kick off in January and run through September 2019.

staywell logo 3 002This quality improvement collaborative will focus on increasing adolescent well visit rates and clarifying practice consent, confi dentiality, and transition policies. In addition, practices will have the opportunities to track optional adolescent measures.

“Pediatricians offer adolescents guidance through potentially turbulent times, however, teens have low annual visits. What can we do to increase adolescent well visit rates? That is what we will tackle in this learning collaborative,” said Nola Ernest, MD, FAAP, #StayWell physician champion and pediatrician with Enterprise Pediatric Clinic.

Here are the top 10 reasons you should participate!
10. Teens are fun to have around...Really!
9. Dr. Preud’Homme, our content expert, and Dr. Ernest, our physician champion, are a hoot!
8. New this year: CME available at the Chapter’s Annual Meeting & Fall Pediatric Update or through online web modules.
7. Simplify your patient-centered medical home applications and renewals with #Stay Well’s emphasis on transition of care
6. You can tailor your experience with optional measures--such as increasing vaccination rates or screening for depression.
5. Upcoming Medicaid changes in patient panel attribution and incentives favor increased adolescent visit rates.
4. Practice improvements occur during the spring and summer, outside of the busy winter months.
3. You will obtain MOC Part IV while improving teen care!
2. You’ll be assured that everyone in your practice will be able to navigate consent and confi dentiality.
1. #Stay Well is a fun way to be sure your practice’s teens are receiving the very best care.

Email Linda Champion at to register and for more information!

This article first appeared in the Third Quarter 2018 Edition of the Alabama Pediatrician Newsletter.See full newsletter here.