"Children are the single largest population group who rely on Medicaid making Medicaid a vital component of ensuring that all children get the health care they need. Children with special health care needs and children from low-income families are especially vulnerable and Medicaid ensures that services tailored to the specific needs of children are available to them. Medicaid participation means that children are more likely to get check-ups, miss less school, graduate and enter the workforce than children who are uninsured. "

Sandra G. Hassink, MD, MS, FAAP

Consultant, Past President, American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
Chair, IMI Subcommittee on Child and Adolescent Health

Dr. Sandra Hassink is past president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, an organization of 67,000 pediatricians with a national and global agenda for children.  She has spent her professional career caring and advocating for children with obesity and is the Director of the AAP Institute for Healthy Childhood Weight focused on translating research into practice for pediatric health care providers, families and children and advancing the field of pediatric obesity. Dr. Hassink has testified before Congress on childhood obesity, food insecurity and hunger focusing on supporting the foundations of child health.

Dr. Hassink began the weight management clinic at Nemours/AI DuPont Children’s Hospital in 1988. She has collaborated in basic research efforts to identify pathophysiologic mechanisms of obesity, centering on the role of leptin, and has lectured widely in the field of pediatric obesity. In addition, she has authored A Parent’s Guide to Childhood Obesity, Pediatric Obesity: Prevention, Intervention, and Treatment Strategies for Primary Care, and Clinical Guide to Pediatric Weight Management

Dr. Hassink dedicates a significant portion of her time to advocacy and policy development on obesity prevention and treatment. She has served on the IOM committee on Accelerating Progress on Obesity Prevention and was an author on the Expert Recommendations for Obesity. Dr. Hassink also holds a Master of Science in Pastoral Care and Counseling.