Please join us in extending our congratulations to Edmund Jooste, MB ChB, on his new role as chief of our Pediatric Anesthesiology Division, effective May 1, and in expressing our sincere gratitude to Allison Ross, MD, for her 15 years of dedication, service and leadership in this position.
“I have been looking forward to stepping down as division chief to take on the next phase of my career where I can contribute to new endeavors while fostering career development in others,” says Dr. Ross, professor of anesthesiology and professor in pediatrics. “Duke has provided the perfect infrastructure to support the goals and objectives set forth years ago when I took this position, and I am so proud of what I have been able to achieve in this role. The metamorphosis of the division and its variable contributions to Duke and to our specialty continues to be exciting and important. I am particularly happy that Dr. Jooste will be transitioning into this role. He is an outstanding leader who will use the foundation that currently exists to take the division to the next level.”
Dr. Ross received her medical degree from Marshall School of Medicine in West Virginia in 1988. She started her training as a resident in pediatrics at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, DC and then continued as a resident in anesthesiology at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, where she stayed to complete a fellowship in pediatric anesthesiology. Dr. Ross arrived at Duke 29 years ago in 1992 as an associate in our department. She rose through the ranks, serving as the division’s associate chief, interim chief and then appointed chief in 2006 in which she assembled a cohesive group of faculty with various backgrounds and strengths who are excellent clinicians, educators and researchers. Notably, Dr. Ross helped to design and create the Children’s Health Center, the preoperative and post-anesthesia care unit areas, the pediatric procedure suite, and ultimately, our suite of pediatric operating rooms. She served as medical director for these areas and developed countless guidelines and protocols for the care of children in the perioperative arena. In 2016, Dr. Ross was named medical director of Children’s Anesthesia; under her leadership, Duke Children’s Hospital and Health Center became an American College of Surgeons (ACS)-verified Level 1 Children’s Surgery Center, one of only five hospitals in the country to receive this distinction at that time. Dr. Ross now serves as an ACS site reviewer for other children’s hospitals.
Early in her career, Dr. Ross was a pioneer for pediatric regional blocks and represented Duke in publications and workshops on landmark techniques in children. She also participated in pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic trials for many of the pediatric anesthesia drugs used today, and served as a consultant for industry and the FDA for drug development in children. She remains active in research regarding the sedation of children who are mentally challenged and in postoperative pain trials. Dr. Ross helped initiate the ACGME-accredited Pediatric Anesthesiology Fellowship at Duke and has provided leadership in 36 roles among Duke organizations and 20 roles among national and international organizations; she currently serves on a national task force supported by the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia to determine appropriate training for fellows and the future of the specialty.
Certified as a business and professional coach, Dr. Ross looks forward to using those skills to contribute to the career development of faculty, trainees and staff. Other future endeavors include consulting for children’s hospitals outside of Duke to improve organization, scheduling and clinical/research growth, and co-leading a group focused on reducing health care disparities in pediatrics at Duke.
Dr. Jooste, professor of anesthesiology and professor in pediatrics, brings 16 years of experience to his new role as division chief. He earned his medical degree at the University of Pretoria in South Africa and went on to complete an anesthesiology residency and a pediatric anesthesiology fellowship at Columbia University in New York. He was a faculty member at Columbia University’s Children’s Hospital of New York and at the University of Pittsburgh’s Children’s Hospital, where he also served as the assistant pediatric fellowship director, before joining Duke Anesthesiology faculty in 2011. Dr. Jooste’s current leadership roles at Duke include the clinical director of Pediatric Cardiac Anesthesiology (held since 2011) where he was part of the creation of the Congenital and Pediatric Heart Center and director of the Clinical Research Unit (held since 2014).
We would also like to express our appreciation to the 10-member search committee for their collective time, efforts and contributions to the search process and selection of Dr. Jooste as division chief – an important task that helps ensure the future success of both the division and the department. The search committee was chaired by Dr. Gavin Martin and comprised of members of our department (Drs. Warwick Ames, Jeanna Blitz, Lisa Einhorn, Nicole Guinn, Evan Kharasch, David MacLeod, Yasmin Maisonave, Adeyemi Olufolabi, and Madhav Swaminathan).
On behalf of our department, we wish Drs. Jooste and Ross the best in the next phase of their careers and we thank Dr. Ross for her commitment to Duke Anesthesiology and the Pediatric Anesthesiology Division.