Press Release


May 21, 2013


Melaney Arnold (217) 558-0500

State Public Health Department Recognizes
Dr. Teresa Riech for Excellence in Pediatric Care

Ron W. Lee, MD Pediatric Care Award Clinical Excellence

PEORIA – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Illinois Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program today honored Teresa Riech, MD with a special pediatric care award for her contributions to childhood care. The Ron W. Lee, MD Excellence in Pediatric Care Awards are given annually by IDPH and EMSC to recognize those dedicated to pediatric emergency care and childhood injury prevention initiatives. Individuals or organizations can be nominated in one of three award categories - Lifetime Achievement, Clinical Excellence and Community Service.

Dr. Teresa Riech is the Emergency Department Pediatric Medical Director at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center and Children's Hospital of Illinois. She is triple board certified in emergency medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. Her education certifications include: Pediatric Advanced Life Support, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Neonatal Resuscitation Provider, Advanced Trauma Life Support and International Trauma Life Support.

"Dr. Riech's dedication to quality pediatric care and promotion of family-centered care is evident not only by her multiple certifications, but by the initiatives created and protocols developed to better treat children," said Illinois Department of Public Health Director LaMar Hasbrouck, MD.

"Dr. Riech's efforts to get pediatric APNs (advanced practice nurses) and child life specialists into the Emergency Department helped to raise pediatric Press Ganey patient satisfaction scores from 60-70 percent in December 2010, to about 90 percent consistently," said OSF Saint Francis Emergency Medical Services Medical Director Leon Allen Yeh, MD, FACEP.

"Dr. Riech's greatest drive has been in the treatment of pain in children. Doing nothing for pain whether "in pain" or "inflicting pain" is just "NOT ACCEPTABLE." Over the past three years we have completely moved from a culture of occasionally providing a pain relief choice to a culture of always providing pain relief," said OSF Saint Francis Pediatric Quality Coordinator Carolyn Henricks, RN.

"The monthly newsletters ("Peds Pearls") that Teresa writes and publishes for the Emergency Department staff enhance education and professional practices at various levels; Child Life Specialists, nursing staff, and bedside technician staff," said OSF Saint Francis Emergency Department Director Sue Behrens, RN, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC,. "Her dedication to providing the highest quality pediatric care is impressive she truly does care."

Children's Hospital of Illinois Medical Director Kay Savings, MD noted, "In my opinion, Teresa truly embodies the ideal of a pediatric emergency medicine physician leader, with her unfailing emphasis on the highest quality of family-centered care for her patients, coupled with her patience and skill in forging long-lasting collaborative relationships that assure an ongoing commitment to the best care of every child, every time."

Dr. Riech is also known as Major Riech, a Flight Surgeon with the Air National Guard logging more than 300 hours in an F-16 Fighting Falcon with deployments to Iraq, Bosnia and Afghanistan. Additionally, Dr. Riech is a Department of Defense Flight Surgeon with NASA, coordinating emergency medical response for space shuttle landings at Edwards Air Force Base.

The Ron W. Lee, MD Excellence in Pediatric Care awards are presented each May. Dr. Lee was the director of emergency medicine at Loyola University Medical Center and was instrumental in establishing and fostering the EMSC program in Illinois. He passed away in 1998.

The Illinois EMSC program is a collaborative effort of the Illinois Department of Public Health and Loyola University Medical Center. It was established in 1994 to ensure the emergency medical care needs of children are adequately addressed.

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