How We Make a Difference
Dr. Smita Malhotra
Chief Medical Director
BiographyDr. Smita Malhotra is the Chief Medical Director for Los Angeles Unified School District, pediatrician, author and speaker. She moved to Los Angeles after the completion of her pediatric residency and chief residency in New York City. As Chief Medical Director, she leads all the medical services of the District and provided leadership for health emergency preparedness and response through the COVID-19 pandemic. She is an advocate for providing children, families and staff with the tools to cope through the peaks and valleys of their lives and empowering them to take charge of their own health and nutrition.Prior to joining Los Angeles Unified, Dr. Malhotra has had a decade of experience, including being the director of a newborn nursery and being the co-founder of a program to build resilience in children experiencing trauma for Los Angeles County.Dr. Malhotra has published 'The Newborn Handbook' which was released in August 2020. She has also contributed to The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Los Angeles Times, and interviewed on CNN, NPR and other media outlets.
The Office of the Chief Medical Director was established in August 2021 and provides health policy direction for the entire school district. The Chief Medical Director also serves as a liaison to the District with both internal and external stakeholders, including the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and university partners. Through collaboration with our multidisciplinary medical teams, we are able to provide leadership to the District in public health emergency preparedness and response, as well as to compassionately care for the physical and mental well-being of both students and employees.
MissionTo provide equitable healthcare access to our school communities so that all students thrive academically, are engaged, successful and ready for the world.
VisionInnovating healthcare and transforming schools where all students are ready to learn.