Richard B. Fratianne, MD, is Director Emeritus of the Comprehensive Burn Care Center at MetroHealth Medical Center. Dr. Frat, as he likes to be called, graduated from Western Reserve University with a BS and MD, and took his surgical and fellowship training at Cleveland City Hospital, now called MetroHealth, a teaching hospital of CWRU, where he has spent his entire career. Dr. Fratianne was the founding Medical Director of the Burn Center in 1969, a position he held until his retirement in 2001, as well as the first Medical Director of Life Flight. He joined the ABA in 1970.
Dr. Frat served on the Case Western Reserve University Senate and was Chairman of the Faculty Council. Currently Emeritus Professor of Surgery, he has 175 publications plus 10 book chapters related to the physiology of shock, tissue cultured skin equivalents, early enteral feedings, early excision and grafting, trauma care, medical ethics, and end of life issues. He has also authored a book titled From Cinders to Butterflies, a Journey to Healing which describes his philosophy of burn care. Since retirement, among many other endeavors, Dr. Frat serves as the coordinator of the Comprehensive Aftercare Program which provides winter and summer camps for burned children. He is the recipient of numerous awards.
In an article in the 2001 Winter Issue of the Case Western Reserve University Magazine titled Miracles Happen Around Him, Dr. Fratianne is described as a team leader who encourages his Burn T.E.A.M. (Together Each Accomplishes More) to provide a nurturing environment to promote phy physical, emotional, and spiritual rehabilitation by helping re-establish the patient's dignity and self esteem, while they are doing the arduous, painful tasks that distinguish Burn Care Professionals from all other health care workers. His mantra is that burns occur from the outside in, and are an incurable disease: the scars are forever. Patients can be healed, however: healing occurs from the inside out. Some of the patients say, Being burned was one of the best things that ever happened to me, and some celebrate a re-birth day on the anniversary of the injury.