COVID-19 Update:Learn more about how we are protecting our patients, families and staff, as well as other important facts about COVID-19.
Child Health Advocacy Institute
Through leadership and collaboration, the CHAI advances policy and systems changes to achieve health equity for all children. The CHAI operationalizes this definition and our mission to advance health equity through our five departments and four core focus areas: community engagement, data, education and policy.
Children’s National Hospital became the first pediatric hospital in the nation to form an in-house advocacy institute. The belief at the time was that in order to create an environment where children could grow up to fulfill their potential, a cohort of advocates was necessary to ensure systems and policy did not ignore the needs of the region’s smallest residents. That mission is even more important today. In 2007, Children’s National became home to the country’s first hospital-based department focused exclusively on child health advocacy, the Child Health Advocacy Institute (CHAI).
We demonstrate our commitment to children and families by investing significant resources and services through our:
As part of our charitable mission, we conduct community benefit programs and activities that increase access to healthcare and improve community health. These programs and activities provide treatment and promote health and healing as a response to identified community needs.
The Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) identifies key health needs through systematic, comprehensive data collection, community engagement and analysis. An assessment is conducted every three years.
The 2022 CHNA, titled “Growing Up Stronger: The Impact of Neighborhood Conditions on Child Opportunity", conducted in partnership with the HSC Health Care System, focuses on place-based inequities in child opportunity within our hospital’s primary service area. We worked in partnership with our community and used the “Child Opportunity Index” to guide this work. The four key needs identified in the CHNA are: early childhood education, healthy food, health insurance coverage and employment.
Download Community Health Needs Assessment (PDF).
The Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) describes the strategies and programming that we conduct to address the priorities identified by the CHNA.
Our team uses innovative research and evidence-based ideas to create programs that improve access to healthcare, advance medical education and much more. Discover more about our community outreach efforts.
Our team provides training on health equity and social determinants of health. Learn more about how we strive to become a national model for social accountability and systemic change in pediatric health.
Child Health Data Lab
Our data scientists help CHAI monitor and track health trends among kids in D.C. Learn more about the data that informs the policies and programs we develop in our community.
We serve as a voice for policy changes in pediatric health at the local, state and federal levels. Advocacy for children's health issues help policymakers make better decisions in our community.
Community Mental Health
We work with healthcare providers, educators and community organizations to create evidence-based approaches that support families and improve mental health outcomes for children in our community.