Advocacy in pediatric neurosurgery: results from a 2017 survey of the American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgeons

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OBJECTIVE

Pediatric neurosurgeons are unswerving advocates for public health–related issues in children, with most providers participating in local, regional, national, or international efforts. Collective advocacy efforts by organized pediatric neurosurgeons have not been undertaken to date.

METHODS

A 10-item survey was administered to members of the American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgeons (ASPN) in order to evaluate attitudes and opinions regarding the development of a formal advocacy effort by the organization.

RESULTS

Seventy-nine of 178 registered members of the ASPN (44.38%) participated in the survey. Participants were 82.61% male, with age, stage of career, and practice type varied. Although there was unequivocal support for participation in organized advocacy, respondents were divided on methods and topics for advocacy. In this survey, the ASPN membership prioritized public health and clinical issues over economic issues that affected children.

CONCLUSIONS

Most respondents favored the drafting of position statements on key issues and partnerships with larger organizations to pursue an advocacy agenda. The survey provides data regarding pediatric neurosurgeons’ attitudes that may assist with the design of a successful advocacy program.

ABBREVIATIONS AANS = American Association of Neurological Surgeons; AAP-SONS = Section of Neurosurgery for the American Academy of Pediatrics; ACS = American College of Surgeons; ASPN = American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgeons; CNS = Congress of Neurological Surgeons.

Article Information

Correspondence Jonathan E. Martin: University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, Hartford, CT. jmartin03@ccmckids.org.

INCLUDE WHEN CITING Published online June 28, 2019; DOI: 10.3171/2019.4.PEDS1911.

Disclosures The authors report no conflict of interest concerning the materials or methods used in this study or the findings specified in this paper.

© AANS, except where prohibited by US copyright law.

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    ASPN membership attitudes regarding organizational involvement in health policy and advocacy. Figure is available in color online only.

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