Joan L. Rosenbaum, MD
Joan L. Rosenbaum, MD, professor of pediatrics, is considered the epitome of the outstanding academic physician through her advocacy, devotion and compassion for patients with complex, life-limiting issues.
Rosenbaum is widely known for her clinical skill in caring for her patients and supporting their families. She is also dedicated to educating colleagues, trainees, and other health care professionals on how to be more effective in their care for these patients.
Particularly inspired by her recent experience as a Kenneth B. Schwartz Fellow in Clinical Pastoral Education for Health Care Professionals at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Rosenbaum has developed several educational and clinical programs. She conducts monthly multidisciplinary rounds in the St. Louis Children’s Hospital neonatal intensive care unit about medically, socially, and ethically complex patients. In addition, she implemented Schwartz Center Rounds, a multidisciplinary, hospital-wide forum in which caregivers discuss difficult emotional and social issues that arise in caring for patients; the first Rounds exceeded the capacity of St. Louis Children’s Hospital’s auditorium.
Rosenbaum also has initiated two selective courses for medical students — “Introduction to Newborn Medicine,” which links students with parents of sick children, and “Healer’s Art,” which strengthens the values of compassion, service, and healing.
She recently produced a two-disc DVD entitled “Grieving in the NICU” featuring families sharing their personal stories of loss. Its purpose is to support grieving families and help health care providers understand firsthand how they can better care for these families.
Rosenbaum earned her bachelor’s degree from Rice University in 1978 and her medical degree from the University of Texas in 1983, then came to St. Louis for her residency and neonatal-perinatal fellowship at Washington University School of Medicine and St. Louis Children’s Hospital. She joined the Washington University faculty in 1986.