Dr. Paul Checchia named president of Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Society

Dr. Paul Checchia, medical director of the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) at Texas Children’s Hospital, has been elected president of the Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Society (PCICS). Checchia’s two-year term will begin in May.

“I am honored to be named president of the Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Society,” says Checchia, who is also a professor of pediatrics-critical care and cardiology at Baylor College of Medicine. “As a member of the society since its inception 16 years ago, I have witnessed firsthand the progress in care and improvement in outcomes that has been made throughout the pediatric cardiac critical care sector as a result of the work done by the society and its members.”

In his presidential role, Checchia will work to establish an international standard for cardiac intensive care units, develop standardized training objectives and create enduring educational materials such as textbooks, databases and continuing medical education programs.

PCICS is an international professional forum for promoting excellence in pediatric cardiac critical care medicine. Through programs, meetings and educational curriculums, the society has a large role in vital research and training that will improve the level of care of pediatric patients with congenital heart disease and acquired cardiovascular disease. Most recently, Checchia and 20 Texas Children’s physicians and nurses attended and presented cutting-edge research at the society’s 10th International Conference, a three-day multidisciplinary, interactive program in Miami.

“We are so proud of Dr. Checchia’s appointment to this important position,” says Dr. Lara Shekerdemian, chief of critical care medicine at Texas Children’s and professor of pediatrics-critical care at Baylor. “His passion in caring for our most critically ill patients and elevating our program continues to be showcased on an international level. This is a well-deserved honor.”

As one of the largest and most active units in the nation, Texas Children’s 21-bed CVICU cares for children in need of specialized care for their cardiac condition. Each year, the unit admits more than 900 children with heart disease, the majority of whom have undergone heart surgery. With one of the largest number of faculty in the nation, Texas Children’s cardiac critical care subspecialty is actively training the next generation of critical care specialists.

The CVICU multidisciplinary team includes cardiovascular intensivists trained in pediatric cardiology, pediatric cardiovascular anesthesiology and pediatric critical care. They work alongside cardiac surgeons and together with a team of highly specialized nurses, respiratory therapists, nurse practitioners and physician assistants to provide the best care and outcomes for our patients.