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IDPH Recognizes Nurse at Ascension Saint Joseph – Joliet for Excellence in Pediatric Care

News – Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Annual Award is Issued to Mark National EMS Week

CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Illinois Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program announced today that Jennifer Radtke, BSN RN, a nurse at Ascension Saint Joseph – Joliet was awarded the Ron W. Lee, M.D. – Excellence in Pediatric Care Community Service Award. It is one of three awards given annually by IDPH and EMSC to recognize healthcare workers in Illinois who are dedicated to pediatric emergency care and childhood injury prevention initiatives.

Nurse Radtke has worked in the Emergency Department at Ascension Saint Joseph for the past six years and is known for her expertise, her empathy with patients and their parents, and her mentorship to new nurses.  During her tenure, she has taken on multiple leadership roles, including serving as the ED representative to the hospital Clinical Leadership Council, the Chair for the Clinical Advancement and Research Impact Team, and the Unit-Based Leadership Chair. 

“We are delighted to recognize the outstanding work of Jennifer Radtke, a frontline nurse who is also a leader and an educator, mentor and advocate for all patients, but particularly pediatric patients,” said Acting IDPH Director Amaal Tokars. “She is known for leading by example and going out of her way to make children and parents feel comfortable in the Emergency Department, while at the same time assuring the very best medical care is provided to all the patients who come through the doors.” 

“Jenni’s efforts on multiple fronts have undoubtedly had significant impact on Joliet’s residents and children,” said Dr. Adnan Hussain, medical director of the Emergency Department at Ascension Saint Joseph. “Through her efforts, we have acquired a toy chest that’s warmly referred to as Sully. Sully is replenished with toys through Jenni’s efforts, and the ability to provide these comfort items to sick children is a great source of pride of our frontline staff.”

The Ron W. Lee, M.D. Excellence in Pediatric Care awards are presented annually in recognition of National EMS Week. Dr. Lee was the medical director for the Division of Emergency Medical Services and Highway Safety at IDPH, as well as 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.

On May 19th, two staff members at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago also received awards for this year under this program: Dr. Meta Carroll, MD, received the Lifetime Achievement award; and Lisa Mathey, APRN, received the Clinical Excellence award.

The Illinois EMSC program is currently a collaborative effort between IDPH and Lurie Children’s Hospital. It was established in 1994 to ensure the emergency medical care needs of children are adequately addressed.