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Back to School with Mask

COVID-19 has caused so much damage as it moves through our communities, from sickness and death to economic disruptions, isolation, and confusion. In Santa Cruz County, a local group of pediatricians, pediatric nurse practitioners, public health staff, and County Office of Education representatives has been meeting regularly to share ideas about how to respond to the specific issues that COVID-19 raises for children and their families.


Convened by the Health Improvement Partnership of Santa Cruz County, the group’s members work to align messages and guidance to pediatric patients and their families, drawing from state and national guidelines and developing materials when needed so that everyone can provide more consistent information in this constantly changing pandemic.

The 4th Wednesday of the month the workgroup meets to discuss primary care and pediatric workforce. These meetings are facilitated by Cal Gordon, MD, Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency Deputy Health Officer and CMS Medical Consultant. If you would like to join these meetings, please email Maria Estela Jerezano, Program Coordinator, at


Santa Cruz County’s Pediatric Health Work Group brings together pediatric physicians and nurse practitioners, local public health representatives, and educators so that all these groups can align and strengthen their efforts to keep Santa Cruz County’s children, youth, and families healthy and safe. 


Initially focused on clarifying guidance through different stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the group’s members tackle other cross-cutting issues as well, such as mental health and substance use, immunizations, and nutrition education. They share resources, best practices, and population health data; alert each other to potential trouble spots on the horizon; align their work flows and messages; and work together across their respective systems to promote health equity and well-being for our County’s youngest residents.


Materials include: 


A standard return-to-school note template that pediatricians can give to their patients, or parents can download and ask their pediatricians to sign if needed


A calendar handout that helps explain the overlapping — and often confusing — timelines for isolation and quarantine for different people in the same household, as well as links to resources that help families find the extra help they may need


A self-care guide with reminders for caregivers to be kind to yourself so that you can continue being kind and caring to others

Pediatric Health Workgroup


​Santa Cruz County of Education




Triple P (Positive Parenting Programs)


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