Memorial Hospitals’ ERs Staffed with Pediatricians from St. Louis Children’s Hospital

Memorial Hospitals’ ERs Staffed with Pediatricians from St. Louis Children’s Hospital

One of the most requested improvements to St. Louis Children’s Hospital’s services has nothing to do with the expertise of its specialists or the care provided to patients. Rather, it’s making those excellent services more accessible to families living throughout the bi-state region.

Convenience is key

“We know it can be intimidating to navigate the hospital’s main campus,” said Michele McKee, St. Louis Children’s Hospital’s vice president of finance and strategic planning. “When families need to see physicians for relatively minor or routine care, they would rather go to facilities near where they live that have convenient parking and access.”

Responding to families’ appeals for more convenience, Children’s Hospital has steadily increased its accessibility through offsite locations. Children’s Hospital pediatric specialists recently began staffing the emergency departments at Memorial Hospital Belleville and Memorial Hospital East in Shiloh, while also providing 24/7 neonatology coverage to its Family Care Birthing Centers.

Community-oriented care

As early as 1996, Washington University emergency medicine physicians and pediatric specialists at Children’s Hospital began staffing the pediatric ER at Missouri Baptist Medical Center and providing neonatology coverage for newborns. Similar services were expanded to Progress West Hospital in O’Fallon, Missouri, with the addition of pediatric inpatient coverage for overnight observation or further treatment.

“These efforts are just the start of our commitment to becoming less main-campus focused and more community oriented,” said McKee.

“We began hearing from pediatricians that after hours on weekdays and over the weekend parents were taking their children to urgent care clinics designed for adults,” McKee said. “The physicians told us the quality of care for pediatric patients was less than optimal, and the Children’s After Hours clinic addresses those concerns by providing a level of care similar to that of a physician’s office through nurse practitioners specially trained in pediatrics.”

“Both St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine are among the best in the country,” said Dr. Mark Lowe, vice chair of clinical affairs, strategic planning, in the department of pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine. “Our goal is to make sure that expertise is easily available throughout our communities so that children receive the best care possible, whether it’s treatment of common childhood illnesses and injuries or complex medical issues.”

Dr. Shawn O’Connor, a neonatologist with Washington University Physicians in Illinois, Inc., is medical director of Memorial’s neonatology program. Dr. Jane Alyce Hunt, a Washington University pediatric hospitalist at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, serves as medical director of the pediatric hospitalist service at Memorial.

To learn more about how to access St. Louis Children’s Hospital services at a location near you, call (314) 454-KIDS (5437) or toll-free at 800-678-KIDS.

Other Partners in Care

  • Emergency department services - TeamHealth is providing emergency department staffing and management services for Memorial Hospitals.
  • Pathology services - Pathology coverage for Memorial Hospitals is being provided by Drs. David Eisenstein and Heidi Lind of Washington University Pathology.
  • Intensivist and hospitalist services - Washington University Physicians in Illinois, Inc. is providing intensivist services at Memorial Hospitals. Dr. Jiggar Hindia serves as medical director of the program. BJC Medical Group is providing hospitalist services for the hospitals. Dr. David Yu is executive medical director of the program.