Joe Grubenhoff, MD
Associate Professor, Pediatrics-Emergency Medicine

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Medical School:
  • MD, Saint Louis University School of Medicine (2002)
Graduate School :
  • MSc, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (2015)
Undergraduate School:
  • BA, Colorado College (CO) (1997)
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program (2003)
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program, Pediatrics (2005)
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program, Pediatric Emergency Medicine (2009)
Languages: English
Department: Pediatrics-Emergency Medicine

Professional Titles

  • Medical Director, Diagnostic Safety Program, Children's Colorado
  • Chair, Professional Standards Committee, Children's Colorado

Recognition & Awards

  • Tim Givens Award for Service to the Section of Emergency Medicine, Section of Emergency Medicine, CU SOM, Dept. of Pediatrics (2023)
    Awarded by vote by peers and team members in the Section of Emergency Medicine for service to the SOEM
  • Medical Alumni Hero, CU Anschutz Medical Alumni Office (2022)
    Awarded to prior CU Anschutz Medical Campus alumni who have contributed clinical and academic mentorship of CU Anschutz medical trainees.
  • ABMS Visiting Scholar, American Board of Medical Specialties (2022)
    The ABMS Visiting Scholars program is a mentored development program that seeks to develop researchers and strategies aimed at helping achieve and maintain board certification in the various participating Boards. Dr. Grubenhoff's project will focus on improving pediatric ED providers' ability to review and calibrate their diagnostic reasoning.
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2022)
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2021)
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2020)
  • Best Oral Research Abstract 2020 13th Annual Diagnostic Error in Medicine Conference, Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine (2020)
    Awarded for the best of 70 research abstracts submitted for peer review to this annual conference focused on improving diagnosis in healthcare.
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2019)
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2018)
  • Golden Stethoscope Physical Exam Skills, University of Colorado (2018)
    This award is given by the School of Medicine Foundations of Doctoring Program for displaying excellent physical exam skills.
  • 5280 Top Doc, 5280 Magazine (2017)
  • Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society, St. Louis University Beta Chapter (2002)
    This is the national medical honor society recognizing medical students demonstrating scholarship, leadership and professionalism. Members typically represent the top 10% of their graduating class.

Research Interests

My research focuses on reducing patient harm that arises from missed opportunities during the diagnostic process.


  • Associate Professor (2016)
    School of Medicine, Pediatrics
    Emergency care, Diagnostic reasoning
  • Coach (2022)
    School of Medicine, Other
    Institute for Healthcare Quality, Safety and Efficiency Certificate Training Program


  • Ladell MM, Shafer G, Ziniel SI, Grubenhoff JA. Comparative Perspectives on Diagnostic Error Discussions Between Inpatient and Outpatient Pediatric Providers. Am J Med Qual. 2023 Sep-Oct 01;38(5):245-254. PubMed PMID: 37678302
  • Grubenhoff JA, Bakel LA, Dominguez F, Leonard J, Widmer K, Sanders JS, Spencer SP, Stein JM, Searns JB. Clinical Pathway Adherence and Missed Diagnostic Opportunities Among Children with Musculoskeletal Infections. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2023 Oct;49(10):547-556. PubMed PMID: 37495472
  • Michelson KA, Bachur RG, Grubenhoff JA, Cruz AT, Chaudhari PP, Reeves SD, Porter JJ, Monuteaux MC, Dart AH, Finkelstein JA. OUTCOMES OF MISSED DIAGNOSIS OF PEDIATRIC APPENDICITIS, NEW-ONSET DIABETIC KETOACIDOSIS, AND SEPSIS IN FIVE PEDIATRIC HOSPITALS. J Emerg Med. 2023 Jul;65(1):e9-e18. PubMed PMID: 37355425
  • Michelson KA, Bachur RG, Cruz AT, Grubenhoff JA, Reeves SD, Chaudhari PP, Monuteaux MC, Dart AH, Finkelstein JA. Multicenter evaluation of a method to identify delayed diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis and sepsis in administrative data. Diagnosis (Berl). 2023 Jun 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 37340621
  • Grubenhoff JA, Perry MF. Complementary Approaches to Identifying Missed Diagnostic Opportunities in Hospitalized Children. Hosp Pediatr. 2023 Jul 1;13(7):e186-e188. PubMed PMID: 37271797
  • Mahajan P, Grubenhoff JA, Cranford J, Bhatt M, Chamberlain JM, Chang T, Lyttle M, Oostenbrink R, Roland D, Rudy RM, Shaw KN, Zuniga RV, Belle A, Kuppermann N, Singh H. Types of diagnostic errors reported by paediatric emergency providers in a global paediatric emergency care research network. BMJ Open Qual. 2023 Mar;12(1). PubMed PMID: 36990648
  • Michelson KA, Bachur RG, Dart AH, Chaudhari PP, Cruz AT, Grubenhoff JA, Reeves SD, Monuteaux MC, Finkelstein JA. Identification of delayed diagnosis of paediatric appendicitis in administrative data: a multicentre retrospective validation study. BMJ Open. 2023 Feb 28;13(2):e064852. PubMed PMID: 36854600
  • Grubenhoff JA, Cifra CL, Marshall T, Perry MF. Issue Brief 14. Pediatric Diagnostic Safety: State of the Science and Future Directions. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; September 2023. Publication No. 23-0040-5-EF.
  • Lam D, Dominguez F, Leonard J, Wiersma A, Grubenhoff JA. Use of e-triggers to identify diagnostic errors in the paediatric ED. BMJ Qual Saf. 2022 Mar 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 35318272
  • Grubenhoff JA, Carubia BA. Understanding Regional Mental Health Care-Seeking Behavior During the COVID-19 Pandemic-An Important Aspect of Addressing Resource Needs. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Jul 1;5(7):e2220560. PubMed PMID: 35797051
  • Howell DR, Wingerson MJ, Kirkwood MW, Grubenhoff JA, Wilson JC. Early aerobic exercise among adolescents at moderate/high risk for persistent post-concussion symptoms: A pilot randomized clinical trial. Phys Ther Sport. 2022 May;55:196-204. PubMed PMID: 35489100
  • Lam D, Dominguez F, Leonard J, Wiersma A, Grubenhoff JA. Use of e-triggers to identify diagnostic errors in the paediatric ED. BMJ Qual Saf. 2022 Oct;31(10):735-743. PubMed PMID: 35318272
  • Michelson KA, Reeves SD, Grubenhoff JA, Cruz AT, Chaudhari PP, Dart AH, Finkelstein JA, Bachur RG. Clinical Features and Preventability of Delayed Diagnosis of Pediatric Appendicitis. JAMA Netw Open. 2021 Aug 2;4(8):e2122248. PubMed PMID: 34463745
  • Kirschen MP, Myers SR, Neuman MI, Grubenhoff JA, Mannix R, Stence N, Yang E, Woodford AL, Rogers T, Nordell A, Vossough A, Zonfrillo MR. Intracranial Traumatic Hematoma Detection in Children Using a Portable Near-infrared Spectroscopy Device. West J Emerg Med. 2021 Mar 24;22(3):782-791. PubMed PMID: 34125061
  • Searns JB, Williams MC, MacBrayne CE, Wirtz AL, Leonard JE, Boguniewicz J, Parker SK, Grubenhoff JA. Handshake antimicrobial stewardship as a model to recognize and prevent diagnostic errors. Diagnosis (Berl). 2021 Aug 26;8(3):347-352. PubMed PMID: 33112779
  • Grubenhoff J. PECARN blunt head-trauma prediction rule in infants <3 months old. J Pediatr. 2021 Nov;238:338-342. PubMed PMID: 34702504
  • Wyner D, Wyner F, Brumbaugh D, Grubenhoff JA. A Family and Hospital's Journey and Commitment to Improving Diagnostic Safety. Pediatrics. 2021 Dec 1;148(6). PubMed PMID: 34851407
  • Graham JMK, Ambroggio L, Leonard JE, Ziniel SI, Grubenhoff JA. Evaluation of feedback modalities and preferences regarding feedback on decision-making in a pediatric emergency department. Diagnosis (Berl). 2021 Dec 13;9(2):216-224. PubMed PMID: 34894116
  • Wyner D, Wyner F, Brumbaugh D, Grubenhoff JA. A Family and Hospital's Journey and Commitment to Improving Diagnostic Safety. Pediatrics. 2021 Dec 1;148(6). PubMed PMID: 34851407
  • Searns JB, Williams M, MacBrayne C, Wirtz A, Parker S, Grubenhoff JA. Handshake Antimicrobial Stewardship as a Model to Recognize and Prevent Diagnostic Errors. Diagnosis. 2020: epub ahead of print
  • Grubenhoff JA, Ziniel SI, Cifra CL, Singhal G, McClead RE Jr, Singh H. Pediatric Clinician Comfort Discussing Diagnostic Errors for Improving Patient Safety: A Survey. Pediatr Qual Saf. 2020 Mar-Apr;5(2):e259. PubMed PMID: 32426626
  • Staab S, Black T, Leonard J, Bruny J, Bajaj L, Grubenhoff JA. Diagnostic Accuracy of Suspected Appendicitis: A Comparative Analysis of Misdiagnosed Appendicitis in Children. Pediatr Emerg Care. 2020 Dec 14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 34170096
  • Flood SM, Osborne CM, Martin B, Derderian SC, Stenson E, Grubenhoff JA. Severe SARS-CoV-2 Infection in a Pediatric Patient Requiring Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation. Case Rep Pediatr. 2020;2020:8885022. PubMed PMID: 33062363
  • Lindberg DM, Stence NV, Grubenhoff JA, Lewis T, Mirsky DM, Miller AL, O'Neill BR, Grice K, Mourani PM, Runyan DK. Feasibility and Accuracy of Fast MRI Versus CT for Traumatic Brain Injury in Young Children. Pediatrics. 2019 Oct;144(4). PubMed PMID: 31533974
  • Gaensbauer J, Grubenhoff JA. Neonatal Herpes Simplex Virus Infections: New Data, Old Conundrum. Pediatrics. 2019 Apr;143(4). PubMed PMID: 30923057
  • Snedden TR, Pierpoint LA, Currie DW, Comstock RD, Grubenhoff JA. Postconcussion Academic Support in Children Who Attend a Primary Care Provider Follow-up Visit after Presenting to the Emergency Department. J Pediatr. 2019 Jun;209:168-175. PubMed PMID: 30853206
  • Grubenhoff JA, Ziniel SI, Bajaj L, Hyman D. Pediatric faculty knowledge and comfort discussing diagnostic errors: a pilot survey to understand barriers to an educational program. Diagnosis (Berl). 2019 Jun 26;6(2):101-107. PubMed PMID: 30759067
  • Cheung DS, Grubenhoff JA. Machine Learning in Clinical Medicine Still Finding Its Way. JAMA Netw Open. 2019 Jan 4;2(1):e186926. PubMed PMID: 30646201
  • Currie D, Snedden T, Pierpoint L, Comstock RD, Grubenhoff JA. Factors Influencing Primary Care Follow-Up After Pediatric Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. J Head Trauma Rehabil. 2019 Jul Aug;34(4):E11-E19. PubMed PMID: 30608309
  • Howell DR, Wilson JC, Kirkwood MW, Grubenhoff JA. Quality of Life and Symptom Burden 1 Month After Concussion in Children and Adolescents. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2019 Jan;58(1):42-49. PubMed PMID: 30311786
  • Gaensbauer JT, Todd J, Grubenhoff JA, Soranno DE, Scudamore D, Cheetham A, Messacar K. A Resident-Based, Educational Program to Drive Individual and Institutional Improvement in a Pediatric Training Hospital. J Pediatr. 2019 Nov;214:4-7.e1
  • Sanchez Cristal N, Staab J, Chatham R, Ryan S, Mcnair B, Grubenhoff JA. Child Life Reduces Distress and Pain and Improves Family Satisfaction in the Pediatric Emergency Department. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2018 Nov;57(13):1567-1575. PubMed PMID: 30175600
  • Grubenhoff JA. The Diagnostic Safety Program at Children’s Hospital Colorado. Pennsylvania Patient Safety Advisory. 2018;15 (Suppl1):p55-56.
  • Vollmer BL, Kirkwood MW, Comstock RD, Currie D, Grubenhoff JA. Assessing the Clinical Utility of the Question, "Is Your Child/Are You Back to Normal?" in Pediatric Concussion Symptom Resolution. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2017 Feb 1;:9922817693300. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 28198194
  • Grubenhoff JA, Currie D, Comstock RD, Juarez-Colunga E, Bajaj L, Kirkwood MW. Psychological Factors Associated with Delayed Symptom Resolution in Children with Concussion. J Pediatr. 2016 Jul;174:27-32.e1. PubMed PMID: 27079963
  • Schmitt BD, Grubenhoff JA. Observations Regarding Evaluation of an After-Hours Call Center: Are Pediatric Patients Appropriately Referred to the Emergency Department?. Pediatr Emerg Care. 2015 Aug;31(8):e5-6. PubMed PMID: 26241720
  • Comstock RD, Currie DW, Pierpoint LA, Grubenhoff JA, Fields SK. An Evidence-Based Discussion of Heading the Ball and Concussions in High School Soccer. JAMA Pediatr. 2015 Sep 1;169(9):830-7. PubMed PMID: 26168306
  • Grubenhoff JA, Deakyne SJ, Comstock RD, Kirkwood MW, Bajaj L. Outpatient follow-up and return to school after emergency department evaluation among children with persistent post-concussion symptoms. Brain Inj. 2015 May 25;:1-6. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 26004755
  • Mackelprang JL, Harpin SB, Grubenhoff JA, Rivara FP. Adverse outcomes among homeless adolescents and young adults who report a history of traumatic brain injury. Am J Public Health. 2014 Oct;104(10):1986-92. PubMed PMID: 25122029
  • Grubenhoff JA, Deakyne SJ, Brou L, Bajaj L, Comstock RD, Kirkwood MW. Acute concussion symptom severity and delayed symptom resolution. Pediatrics. 2014 Jul;134(1):54-62. PubMed PMID: 24958583
  • Chamberlain JM, Okada P, Holsti M, Mahajan P, Brown KM, Vance C, Gonzalez V, Lichenstein R, Stanley R, Brousseau DC, Grubenhoff J, Zemek R, Johnson DW, Clemons TE, Baren J, Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN). Lorazepam vs diazepam for pediatric status epilepticus: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA. 2014 Apr 23-30;311(16):1652-60. PubMed PMID: 24756515
  • Kirkwood MW, Peterson RL, Connery AK, Baker DA, Grubenhoff JA. Postconcussive symptom exaggeration after pediatric mild traumatic brain injury. Pediatrics. 2014 Apr;133(4):643-50. PubMed PMID: 24616360
  • Kedia S, Ginde AA, Grubenhoff JA, Kempe A, Hershey AD, Powers SW. Monthly variation of United States pediatric headache emergency department visits. Cephalalgia. 2014 May;34(6):473-8. PubMed PMID: 24335850
  • Mandt MJ, Grubenhoff JA. Emergencies and Injuries. In Hay WW et al, ed. Current Diagnosis and Treatment-Pediatrics, 22nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2014:334-356.
  • Grubenhoff JA, Provance A. Physical and Neurologic Exam. In Yeates KO & Kirkwood M, eds. Pediatric Mild Traumatic Brain Injury: From Basic Science to Clinical Management. New York: Guilford; 2012:196-217.
  • Grubenhoff JA, Kirkwood M, Deakyne S, Wathen J. Detailed concussion symptom analysis paediatric ED population. Brain Inj 2011;25(10):943-949.
  • Greene AE, Roosevelt GE, Grubenhoff JA, Klein U. Little boy black and blue. Pediatr Emerg Care 2011;27(8):758-759.
  • Grubenhoff JA. Head Injury. In: Bajaj L et al, eds. Berman’s Pediatric Decision Making, 5th ed. Philadelphia: Mosby; 2011:418-21.
  • Grubenhoff JA. Neck Injury. In: Bajaj L et al, eds. Berman’s Pediatric Decision Making, 5th ed. Philadelphia: Mosby; 2011:422-25.
  • Grubenhoff JA, Kirkwood M, Gao D, et al. Evaluation of the Standardized Assessment of Concussion in a Pediatric Emergency Department Population. Pediatrics 2010;126(4):688-695.
  • Grubenhoff JA, Brent A. Case Report: Brown-Sequard syndrome resulting from a ski injury in a 7-year-old male. Curr Opin Pediatr 2008 20(3): 341-344.
  • Grubenhoff JA, du Ford K, Roosevelt GE. Heat-related illness. Clin Ped Emerg Med 8(1): 59-64. 2007
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Professional Memberships

  • American Academy of Pediatrics, Section of Emergency Medicine (AAP), Fellow, Member
  • Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine, Member

Practice Locations

Children's Hospital Colorado South Campus
1811 Plaza Drive
Highlands Ranch, CO 80129

Children's Hospital Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
13123 East 16th Ave
Aurora, CO 80045

Children's Hospital Colorado North Campus
469 State Highway 7
Broomfield, CO 80023

Hospital Affiliation
  • Children's Hospital Colorado

Specialty Information

  • Pediatrics, Board Certification (2005, 2021)
  • Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Board Certification (2011, 2021)
  • Advanced Trauma Life Support, Certificate (2005)
  • Pediatric Advanced Life Support, Certificate (2002)
Conditions & Treatments
  • Child and Teen Health
  • Emergency Care
  • Urgent Care
  • Injuries and Wounds
Clinical Interests
I have a particular interest in the cognitive psychology of human decision-making and its impact on diagnostic reasoning and patient harm. Improving our understanding of the role that systematic errors play in decision-making is a critical component to improving patient safety. Patient safety starts with the right diagnosis.

Care Philosophy
I aim to provide relationship-centered evidence-based care for ill and injured children. Shared decision-making supported by sound medical knowledge and informed by the child's and parents' wishes and values is the best way to speed kids to recovery.

Personal Interests
My personal time is spent snowboarding, hiking, road and mountain biking. I also enjoy spending time with my kids and tending to my koi pond.

General Information

Medical Schools:
  • MD, Saint Louis University School of Medicine (2002)
Graduate Schools:
  • MSc, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (2015)
Undergraduate Schools:
  • BA, Colorado College (CO) (1997)
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program (2003)
Residency Programs:
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program, Pediatrics (2005)
  • University of Colorado (Children's Hospital Colorado) Program, Pediatric Emergency Medicine (2009)
Download CV
Languages: English
Department: Pediatrics-Emergency Medicine
Contact Us
CU Anschutz
Fitzsimons Building

13001 East 17th Place
Campus Box C290
Aurora, CO 80045

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