Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma marks first anniversary

August 10, 2009

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – On July 30, 2008, Richard and Judy Childress announced an ambitious plan to launch the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. A year later, the institute has made important strides in its mission of addressing childhood injury, the leading cause of death in children.

Richard Childress says that, while the hard work of education, prevention and research continues, a great deal has been accomplished.

“My family and I truly appreciate the contributions made over the past year to the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma,” said Childress, president and CEO of Richard Childress Racing and the Institute’s founder and chairman of its advisory board. “From the generous gifts of our financial donors to Dr. (J. Wayne) Meredith and everyone else who has devoted their professional lives to making the institute a success, we have launched the program and created a solid foundation to build on.”

In its first year, the institute has:

  • Designed an intensive pilot training program for first-responders that will serve as a replicable national model;
  • Established 10 partnerships and affiliates, including with the World Health Organization / Centers for Disease Control, and the Pediatric Medical Device Institute;
  • Held a national conference that represented the first significant research dialogue on pediatric trauma; and
  • Developed a consortium of 15 joint-appointed faculty, including nationally recognized researchers in pediatrics, pediatric surgery and biomedical engineering.

“We are still only in the beginning phase and will need the help of many others to make an impact on the number one killer of kids in our country – serious injury,” Childress said. “The progress made in the first year makes us all even more determined to reach our ambitious goals.”

Each year, serious injuries claim the lives of more than 12,000 children in the United States – more than all other causes combined. The institute’s goal is to save these lives and to help kids affected by these injuries recover to lead a more normal life.

“We are enthusiastic about the progress we’ve made, and impatient to move even faster, yet we want to move deliberately and hold ourselves to the highest standards,” said J. Wayne Meredith, M.D., executive director of the Childress Institute. “I believe we are ready to meet the rigorous requirements for being approved by the American College of Surgeons as a Level One Pediatric Trauma Center, and that within nine months we will receive this accreditation.”

To learn more about the Childress Institute, visit or call at (866) 635-8190.


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