About Us

Joanne Kennedy M.D.

Thank you for taking time to review our program! Mercer Pediatrics’ mission is to guide and support talented new physicians as you work to become the board-certified, confident, caring pediatricians you strive to be.

Our goal is to prepare you for whatever you might face after graduation, whether your dream takes you to a pediatric subspecialty fellowship or into general pediatric practice. Here, you receive comprehensive clinical training at our state-of-the-art, stand-alone Children’s Hospital working side by side with expert subspecialists in an unopposed environment. In our children’s emergency room, you will admit patients from the local area, while our children’s hospital and neonatal intensive care units also accept transfer patients from all of southern Georgia.

Our mission is to create leaders who provide care and create systems to keep the children of Georgia safe and healthy. We intentionally build diverse and inclusive teams in our hospital, our faculty, and our residency to reflect the variety of the patient families we serve and to reap the benefits that a range of perspectives, cultures, and life experiences can bring to complex problem-solving. Through clinical care, journal clubs, didactic sessions and projects, you will develop skills in wellness, professionalism, and advocacy to leverage toward child health equity, social justice, and a better world for children.

Check out our residents’ publications this year in BMJ Case Reports and Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal the for evidence of our fascinating clinical and research opportunities. Resident posters were accepted at the Georgia AAP and National AAP conferences in 2020, and in a collaborative project with family medicine, our residents presented original research at the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine Conference this Spring. Ongoing projects include clinical investigations into possible associations between Type I Diabetes incidence and the COVID pandemic, and health/gender equity work around period (menstruation) poverty for students at local schools.

We build experience in advocacy and professionalism through active membership with the AAP. This year, our residency delegate will be attending the National AAP conference for special sessions with the Section on Pediatric Trainees. Each Spring, residents participate in AAP Legislative Committee calls to help shape the pediatric perspective on policy with our state government, and annually, pediatric trainees attend the Primary Care Coalition Day at the Capital to meet with representatives and speak out on important health issues for kids.

We cultivate a feedback-rich environment to help residents and our program continuously improve. Based on resident requests, this year adds a special journal club series covering professionalism and wellness, and residents now receive training with an epidemiologist in teaching sessions throughout the year to bolster skills in research design and study interpretation. Our new Board Preparation curriculum features faculty-led discussions on board relevant topics from Pediatrics-in-Review. These sessions cover the recommended five years of articles over three years of residency, and a study plan to cover five years of PREP questions in the same period.

Our residents are motivated pediatric advocates who understand the importance of teamwork, professionalism, and wellness to prevent burnout across a decades-long career in pediatrics. We have a good time at work, are constantly learning, and care for a diverse population of children with a wide variety of pathology. Ideal candidates learn, work and play well others, are interested in advocacy and community engagement, and can see themselves thriving in a smaller city environment. If this sounds like you, we encourage you to apply!

Joanne Kennedy M.D.
Interim Pediatric Residency Program Director
Atrium Health Navicent