Nov. 18, 2021 — Cristina Zeretzke-Bien, M.D., FAAP, FAAEM, a UF College of Medicine clinical associate professor and assistant medical director for the pediatric emergency division, has been elected as the next chair for the Pediatric Emergency Medicine section of the American College of Emergency Physicians, or ACEP.
ACEP represents more than 38,000 emergency physicians, emergency medicine residents and medical students, improving the quality of care through the development of evidence-based clinical policies, funding research and providing public education.
As chair, Zeretzke-Bien will serve as a national leader for the development of pediatric emergency medicine, educating the public on disaster preparedness, legislative and advocacy efforts and more. She will take over the appointment from Tricia Swan, M.D. M.Ed., FAAP, FACEP, a UF College of Medicine associate professor and program director for the college’s pediatric emergency medicine fellowship.
“Having UF physicians at this table keeps our university aligned with national standards and keeps us on the leading-edge when compared with other institutions,” Zeretzke-Bien said.
Zeretzke-Bien is passionate about improving child services with a particular interest in vulnerable populations, including victims of sexual assault, human trafficking and domestic violence, along with disaster preparedness.
Speaking on the importance of disaster preparedness, she recalled caring for patients as a resident in New Orleans’ Tulane Medical Center in 2005 when Hurricane Katrina flooded the city and hospital, prompting a military rescue operation to safely evacuate patients and staff.
“I have seen firsthand how important pediatric preparedness is for our pediatric patients,” she said. “I want to continue to support the efforts of improving pediatric disaster preparedness and to keep our section’s advocacy for such preparations at the forefront.”
Mary Patterson, M.D., M.Ed., interim chair of the UF department of emergency medicine, said Zeretzke-Bien’s appointment continues to keep UF at the forefront of national pediatric emergency medicine leadership.
“Dr. Zeretzke-Bien brings great passion to this role and will be an excellent advocate for pediatric emergency medicine and pediatric patients,” she said.