Message from the Interim Chair

“Children are one-third of our population and all of our future.”
– Select Panel for the Promotion of Child Health, 1981

Desmond Schatz, MD

Welcome to the University of Florida Department of Pediatrics in Gainesville, a leading national program in child health. The three pillars of our mission focus on excellence and innovation in providing high-quality patient care, researching important scientific questions, and educating the next generation of pediatric providers and researchers. In all areas, we strive to be the best, and we will continue making improvements to meet the needs of our most important focus — our patients.

The work we do is possible because of our outstanding team, which consists of 135 faculty members, more than 80 residents and fellows, and an entire support staff. We offer compassionate clinical care across all major medical subspecialties in pediatrics at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital and in outreach clinics around the state. Our national rankings and noteworthy health outcomes draw children with complex medical problems from around the United States and overseas. We understand that children are not small adults, and our care reflects their unique physical, emotional and developmental needs. We know that we could not do what we do without the family members of our patients, who also provide incredible support and adapt to the patient’s needs as we do.

The patient care we provide is informed by a wide array of clinical, basic and translational research, which is guided by our shared values of collaboration and integrity. Our physician-scientists have received national and international recognition for their accomplishments. Major advances in pediatric health have been made possible through funding awards from the National Institutes of Health and numerous philanthropies, as well as departmental and institutional resources.

We invest in the education and training of the next generation of outstanding clinicians, physician-scientists, and leaders in pediatrics. We are uniquely positioned as the only medical school in the United States to offer five distinct residency tracks in Primary Care, Public Health, Global Health, Medical Education, and Research. Our goal is to recruit, train, and develop a highly talented and diverse workforce to advance the health of children nationally and internationally.

Our department is strongly connected to our Gainesville and Florida community, along with our University of Florida alumni. I invite you to explore our website and learn why the UF Department of Pediatrics ranks among the best pediatric programs in the nation. Our dedicated faculty, trainees, and staff are committed to improving the health and well-being of children.

Desmond Schatz, M.D.
Professor and Interim Chair of Pediatrics