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Quality Initiatives

The Department of Pediatrics is committed to continuous improvement in all domains and focuses on the Institute of Medicine's six domains of healthcare quality. We perform, support and train in improvement science and partner with Northwestern University for more comprehensive training. We will consider our program a success when we view everything as an opportunity for improvement.

Healthcare quality and safety initiatives are critical to providing optimal healthcare as well as reducing variations of care that will facilitate greater learning in all forms of research. Faculty involved in these initiatives help train medical students, residents and fellows in quality and safety.

The Department of Pediatrics is looking to expand the number of faculty members with healthcare quality and safety expertise. We offer several opportunities for faculty to expand their expertise in these areas:

Certificate Course for Improvement Scholars

This six-month course involves multidisciplinary faculty and participants including physicians. Scholars learn in didactic sessions and initiate an improvement project in their microsystem to accelerate their learning.

Journal Writing Club

We have initiated an Improvement Writers group that will advance optimal utilization of SQUIRE guidelines in September 2018. Graduates of this program are expected to submit healthcare quality and safety manuscripts, help teach the ensuing session and serve as mentors for other colleagues working in these areas.

Value in Healthcare

Faculty involved in quality and safety initiatives are currently developing a method for quantifying value in healthcare. This will enable the institution to prioritize work based on metrics that matter most to our patients and their families.

Larry K Kociolek

Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases)

My research interests are in the areas of healthcare epidemiology and infection prevention and control, particularly Clostridium difficile infections. I am exploring various aspects of C. difficile infection, including clinical and molecular epidemiology, diagnosis, antibiotic resistance, and host immune response. The primary aims of my K23-funded translational research are to optimize the diagnosis of C. difficile infection by validating several existing and emerging diagnostic testing strategies in children with the ultimate goal of accurately differentiating C. difficile colonization and in...

Kenny delBarco Kronforst

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Neonatology)

Kenny D. Kronforst received a B.S. degree in Microbiology, as well as, her MPH with a concentration in Epidemiology from University of Miami. She then completed her M.D. at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (now McGovern Medical School). She graduated medical school in 2006 and continued her intern year in Pediatrics at the same institution. In 2007, she transferred to Boston, MA, and became part of the Boston Combined Residency Program in Pediatrics. She successfully completed that program and transitioned to the Boston Children’s Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Fellowship ...

Katelyn E Burgess

Instructor of Pediatrics (Hospital-Based Medicine)

My clinical work focuses on the care of hospitalized children, from the observation unit to the neonatal and pediatric intensive care units. I also supervise pediatric residents at the Lincoln Park continuity clinic. My interests include advocacy, global health, injury prevention, and the clinical education of medical students and residents.

Justyna Grothaus

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Neonatology)

My academic interests are primarily focused on improving neonatal care and neonatal patient safety through quality improvement efforts. My current projects involve reducing unplanned extubations and reducing length of stay related to neonatal abstinence syndrome. I am a member of the Illinois Perinatal Quality Collaborative Advisory Board (ILPQC), through which I help develop and implement initiatives to improve care for both infants and mothers.

Shayna Hibbs

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Neonatology)

Dr. Hibbs has a research interest in perinatal epidemiology, particularly in understanding social determinants of racial and ethnic disparities in birth outcomes. Dr. Hibbs also has an academic focus in medical education.

Mary C Pierce

Professor of Pediatrics (Emergency Medicine) and Preventive Medicine

Dr. Pierce’s research interest focuses primarily on injuries in children with an emphasis on differentiating abusive from accidental trauma. Dr Pierce collaborates with a multi-disciplinary lab with emphasis on injury biomechanics. This lab combines the expertise of medicine and engineering and utilizes both a clinical and an experimental approach. Dr. Pierce’s research focus is the development of injury plausibility models, including clinical decision rules, for differentiating abusive and accidental trauma in the young child that combines medical, social, biologic, and engineering knowledge....

Jennifer Jao

Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases)

Dual certified in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, Dr. Jao is an Associate Professor at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in the Departments of Pediatric and Adult Infectious Diseases whose research focus is HIV maternal child health. She obtained her MD at the Medical College of Georgia and completed a Medicine/Pediatrics residency at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. She trained in Infectious Diseases and obtained her MPH degree at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Jennifer P Rubin

Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Neurology and Epilepsy)

I am a child neurologist who sees children with general neurologic conditions, both in the city and in various outreach clinics. I also have additional specialized training and interest in demyelinating disease (multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis, neuromyelitis optica) and leukodystrophies. I am the co-director of Lurie's Leukodystrophy Care Center.

Norell Rosado

Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Child Abuse)

I graduated from La Universidad LaSalle, School of Medicine in Mexico City, Mexico. In 2000, I completed a residency in Pediatrics at Sinai Children’s Hospital in Chicago. I became Board Certified in General Pediatrics by the American Board of Pediatrics in 2001 and in Child Abuse Pediatrics in 2009. In 2000, I joined the Child Protective Services Team at Sinai Children’s Hospital. I served as its Medical Director from 2002 to 2005. In 2004, I joined the Division of Child Protective Services at the John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County. I was one of four Child Abuse Pediatricians workin...

Adam B Becker

Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine (Public Health Practice)

Dr. Becker has extensive training and experience in the practice of Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) and has written a number of book chapters and articles on this approach to examining and addressing public health problems. He has applied this methodology to examine and address the impact of stressful community conditions on the health of women raising children, youth violence prevention, and the impact of the social and physical environment on physical activity. In his role as executive director of the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children, he is currently exploring th...

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