Richmond University Medical Center has announced the appointment of Johnathon LeBaron, DO, FACEP, as its new Chair for the Department of Emergency Medicine. Dr. LeBaron takes the helm of the hospital’s Level I Adult Trauma and Level II Pediatric Trauma emergency department, which treats close to 65,000 patients annually.
“Dr. LeBaron brings a wealth of experience and knowledge having been at the helm of one of the premier Level I Adult Trauma Center’s in New York City at New York Presbyterian-Queens,” president and chief executive officer, Daniel J. Messina, PhD, FACHE, said. “As a Level I Adult Trauma Center ourselves, his experience and expertise, combined with his proven leadership skills, are critical as we continue providing all emergency care services for our adult and pediatric patients while in the midst of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic.”
Prior to RUMC, Dr. LeBaron served as the Medical Director of the Adult Emergency Department at New York Presbyterian-Queens, located in Flushing. Under his direction, the emergency department treated over 100,000 patients annually. He was instrumental to creating the hospital’s stroke program, which has won multiple American Heart Association Get with the Guidelines awards. He was also key to the hospital’s re-certification process so it could maintain its Level 1 Adult Trauma status with the New York State Department of Health. A Level I designation means that a staff of trained physicians, including surgeons, neurosurgeons, radiologists, orthopedists, anesthesiologists, emergency medicine, and other specialists, are available 24/7 to treat life-threatening traumatic injuries. RUMC is also a Level I Adult Trauma Center, as well as a Level II Pediatric Trauma Center. Seven years ago, RUMC achieved Level I Adult Trauma and Pediatric Level II Trauma Center status, making it the first medical facility in New York City to achieve this dual designation. Level II Pediatric designation means the hospital has a trained, comprehensive medical staff, along with the latest equipment, and technology to also treat all pediatric emergencies, 24/7.
“I hope to bring my expertise in trauma and stroke care, among others, here to RUMC to continue building upon our excellent programs in these fields of emergency medicine,” Dr. LeBaron said.
Also while at New York Presbyterian-Queens, Dr. LeBaron led the team that treated hundreds of COVID-19 patients when the pandemic first hit New York City this past spring. He and his team created many of the protocols used for treatment and disposition of COVID-19 patients, including the procedures for properly proning patients. Many of the protocols he developed would eventually be used throughout the New York Presbyterian hospital system.
Dr. LeBaron has a Bachelor of Science degree in Physio-Neuro Biology and Molecular Cellular Biology from the University of Connecticut. He attended medical school at UMNJ School of Osteopathic Medicine and completed his residency in Emergency Medicine at New York Presbyterian-Queens. He stayed on at New York Presbyterian-Queens under Envision Physician Services, completing a Fellowship in Administration of Emergency Medicine. He would eventually be appointed Associate Director of the Emergency Department at Presbyterian before ultimately being named its Medical Director of the Adult Emergency Department. During his time at New York Presbyterian-Queens, he also completed the American College of Emergency Physicians Emergency Department Director’s Academy, as well as Envision Physician Services’ Leadership academy.
Dr. LeBaron comes to RUMC as the hospital is in the midst of construction on a new 35,000 square foot, two-story emergency department. Opening in the spring of 2022, the new emergency department will feature dedicated, larger treatment areas for trauma, pediatrics, urgent care, and additional specialty areas on the ground floor. The second floor will feature state-of-the-art surgical suites and increased space for surgical support services. The current emergency department, constructed in 1978, is 15,000 square feet and built to service around 30,000 emergency care patents annually. To date, RUMC has treated and discharged over 1,500 COVID-19 patients since March.