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Lawrence Ricci, MD

The Ray E. Helfer Society Awards Dr. Lawrence Ricci Its Highest Honor

Lawrence RicciLawrence R. Ricci, MD, currently Co-Director, Spurwink Child Abuse Program, Portland, Maine, was presented with the 2016 Ray E. Helfer Award at the society’s Annual Meeting in April. The Helfer Society is an international society of physicians seeking to provide leadership to enhance the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of child abuse and neglect. The award is presented annually to a member in recognition of his or her distinguished contributions in the field.

Dr. Ricci is dual residency trained and successfully completed his boards in Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, and Child Abuse Pediatrics. He is a board certified child abuse pediatrician specializing in the evaluation and treatment of abused children as Co-director of the Spurwink Child Abuse Program. Dr Ricci started this program in 1986. The Child Abuse Program is a multidisciplinary statewide referral center for Maine children with satellites in Waterville and Bangor Maine. The program evaluates over 1000 children and 250 adults annually for abuse concerns. The team consists of Dr Ricci, a nurse practitioner, 3 masters level social work forensic interviewers, and three doctoral level psychologists. Over the past 25 years, Dr. Ricci has evaluated and treated several thousand children for abuse concerns.

Dr. Ricci has served on a number of state and national child abuse committees including former Chair of the Maine Child Death/Serious Injury Review Panel (1992-2008) and former Chair of the Section on Child Abuse of the American Academy of Pediatrics (1990-1994). He is a former president of the Ray E. Helfer Society (2002-2004). Dr. Ricci has developed numerous child abuse workshops throughout Maine and around the country; these have been presented to social workers, mental heath professionals, legal professionals, and medical professionals. He frequently testifies in both civil and criminal court both in Maine and around the country and has published approximately 25 articles and book chapters in the field of child abuse evaluation and treatment. He has a particular expertise in photodocumentation and lectures and consults regularly on camera systems and photographic techniques.

Dr Ricci and his colleagues at the Spurwink Child Abuse Program have recently implemented a medical and mental health evaluation service for children newly into foster care and are working with a multidisiciplinary team to develop an intervention program for children known to the child welfare system with failure to thrive. Most recently, in addition to a busy clinical practice, Dr Ricci has focused his work in Maine on Shaken Baby Prevention, Safe Sleep, and physician recognition and reporting of child abuse. He works closely with multiple agencies throughout the state including the Maine Children’s trust for which he serves on the board, and the Department of Human Services, for which he consults on clinical cases and policy development.