My name is Dr. Nerissa Bauer. I am a behavioral pediatrician, health services researcher, child advocate and blogger. I specialize in behavioral concerns among preschoolers, school age children and tweens. I completed a general pediatrics residency at the University of California, San Diego. I spent an additional year focusing solely on developmental and behavioral issues under the teaching of Dr. Martin Stein. When our community was affected by gun violence, I realized I wanted to learn more about public health so I can become a better advocate in the community at large.
I was accepted into a Masters of Public Health program at the University of Washington and it was there that I opened a foster care clinic at Harborview Medical Center. I saw foster children with high levels of behavioral issues and foster parents who desperately wanted help. At the time, I didn’t have my own children and quite honestly, there had not been much focus on parenting during my training. In Seattle, I met Dr. Carolyn Webster-Stratton, the developer of the Incredible Years, a parent training program. I learned her program by doing: I participated in a 22-week parenting course for parents with children with ADHD. I reviewed videos of the group with Dr. Webster-Stratton and eventually allowed to co-lead some of the group. I learned group parenting programs were an amazing way to teach skills and provide support.
I eventually took my first faculty position at Indiana University School of Medicine in August 2006. I set up a behavioral clinic and worked to adapt the Incredible Years program to teach future pediatricians how to handle behavioral concerns in practice. I began speaking and teaching others about our program at Riley at national conferences. I also conducted research to improve the identification and management of developmental and behavioral issues in primary care. I eventually developed a primary care, group-based program called TEACH (Tailoring Education for ADHD and Children’s Health) for families to learn about and manage ADHD. I have published over 35 papers related to improving the developmental and behavioral health of children. While I enjoyed my 12.5 years at Riley, I needed more work-life balance. I took some much needed time off and then started with Axon Health seeing patients part-time.
Throughout my career, I have seen firsthand how important clear communication is with patients and their families, especially when facing stressful behavioral concerns. I love to design family-friendly handouts and using children’s books as a way to teach key concepts to children and their families.
In 2016, I started a blog, Let’s Talk Kids Health , as a place to share my handouts and resources I have developed over the years. I am active with my professional organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics. You can find me on social media and in the news often advocating for child and family wellness issues and speaking or writing on developmental and behavioral topics. For fun, I enjoy spending time with my husband, two children and our English Creme golden, traveling, reading, cooking, doing puzzles, fitness and tap dancing.