Chandani DeZure, MD, FAAP is a board-certified pediatrician and AAP-CA3’s equity, diversity, and inclusion champion. She specializes in the care of newborns in the neonatal intensive care unit and pediatric patients in acute care settings. She cares for healthy newborns in the well-baby nursery and attends deliveries of high-risk infants that may require resuscitation at birth. She continues to see children of all ages in the pediatric clinic in an outpatient setting as well. Dr. DeZure speaks English, Spanish, Gujarati, and Hindi. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago & her medical degree from Rush Medical College in Chicago and went on to complete her pediatric residency at the University of Chicago Comer.
AAP-CA3: What is your current job/professional responsibilities?
Dr. DeZure: Currently, I work part-time as a NICU hospitalist at Stanford Children’s Health with an academic position of Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford School of Medicine and part-time as an outpatient pediatrician for Palomar Health Medical Group in Poway.
AAP-CA3: How did you first get involved in the AAP?
Dr. DeZure: I’ve been a member of the national AAP since graduating residency and then joining local chapters at the various cities I’ve lived. Most notably, my first job out of residency was in Washington DC and the sheer amount of advocacy that the local chapters did was inspiring to get involved and enact change for children at a different level than I was taught in residency.
AAP-CA3: Why should pediatricians join the AAP?
Dr. DeZure: The one thing that we can all agree on is that the medical system in the US is broken, and it’s broken even more when it comes to children’s health. We can all find things to complain about, or we can find avenues to create the change we want to see. The AAP offers many opportunities to pursue your passion to help children via many different perspectives including advocacy, policy, media, education, patient care, and practice management.
AAP-CA3: What is your current role in the AAP-CA3 chapter?
Dr. DeZure: I am currently the EDI (equity, diversity, inclusion) champion of the AAP-CA3 chapter with the goal of reducing health disparities in pediatric care in the San Diego area in a collaborative and meaningful manner.
AAP-CA3: What do you enjoy most about being a chapter member?
Dr. DeZure: I love the people who are part of the AAP-CA3 chapter. Everyone is dedicated, compassionate, and invested in the mission, and constantly looking for ways to help each other, and ensuring that our programs thrive. Our successful initiatives, in turn, help improve the lives of our pediatric patients.
AAP-CA3: How does the chapter support your passion?
Dr. DeZure: In every way possible. Since joining, everyone at the chapter has been friendly, welcoming, and genuinely interested in helping me succeed. They’ve been instrumental in helping connect me to various stakeholders in San Diego to further EDI initiatives. There are long-standing members who have provided mentorship as I learn more about the San Diego area patient population and previous initiatives. What I appreciate about the chapter is everyone’s commitment to improving EDI to enact long-term sustainable change in pediatric health care.
AAP-CA3: Did you have a mentor who influenced you to become the physician that you are now?
Dr. DeZure: Yes, huge shoutout to Dr. Maria Alkureishi at the University of Chicago. She has shaped who I am as a physician and person in so many ways that words cannot express my gratitude to her.
AAP-CA3: What do you like to do in your spare time?
Dr. DeZure: I love spending time with my family, watching/playing sports (die-hard Chicago fan), and traveling & exploring new places.