Memorial Burn Care

The highly acclaimed Memorial Burn Care at Springfield Memorial Hospital serves central and southern Illinois and treats more than 200 acutely injured patients each year with state-of-the-art treatment and the latest technology. The team uses a multi-disciplinary approach and members include: physicians, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, dietitians, pastoral care, a healthcare psychologist, a discharge planner, infection prevention, respiratory therapy, pharmacy and other healthcare professionals as needed for individual patients.


Mission: To enhance wound healing through direct line nursing and surgical intervention.


To optimize functional outcomes and community reintegration for burn patients through a multi-level delivery system that focuses on state-of-the-art technology and excellence in human services.

Highlights for Memorial Burn Care include:

  • Highest level of care through comprehensive, innovative programming
  • Sensitivity and respect for our patients and their families
  • Creative solutions to challenges of healthcare environment
  • Dynamic and stimulating environment for professional activities
  • 2020 renovation included: updated private rooms, a specialized tub and shower addition to enable hydrotherapy for burn care, cardiac monitors outside patient rooms to increase visibility of patient hemodynamic indicators, two isolation anterooms to facilitate infection prevention requirements for specialized patients and more.

Support Services

The Memorial Burn Care emphasizes a team approach from all disciplines for the care of burn patients. Support services for patients and their families include:

  • Patient Transportation: Springfield Memorial Hospital can assist with arranging transportation of patients by ground ambulance, helicopter or fixed wing. Call 1-877-662-7829 for information.
  • CEA Lab: Services of a skin culture lab are available to Memorial Burn Care patients in a cooperative effort with the SIU School of Medicine.
  • Regularly Scheduled Interdisciplinary Rounds: Each week, the Burn Center team does a comprehensive review of each patient’s total care, including patient and family needs as well as a coordination of services post-discharge to ensure a smooth transition home.
  • Rehabilitation Services: Comprehensive rehabilitative services are offered to patients once they have been discharged from the Memorial Burn Care. Rehabilitation professionals help patients to re-learn daily living skills and adjust to lifestyle changes that result from injury.
  • Annual Education Series: The Memorial Burn Care staff, in conjunction with the SIU School of Medicine Institute for Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, presents a Wound Care Symposium for statewide healthcare professionals offering speakers and the latest healthcare information for treating all types of wounds


Many factors can affect the healing process of burns. Thank to the team from our partner, SIU School of Medicine's Division of Plastic Surgery Burn Clinic, for providing answers to these frequently asked questions.

What do the burn degrees indicate?

The severity of a burn is determined by its effect on skin and tissue. There are three categories of burns: first-degree (superficial burns), second-degree (partial thickness burns) and third-degree (full thickness burns).


  • First-degree burns involve only the outermost layer of skin and is least severe type. Skin is still intact, but the area of burn may be red and warm to the touch. Small blisters and swelling may also occur. This type of burn may be painful but is not life-threatening.
  • Second-degree burns occur when the dermis layer of skin is burned. The burn may be very red with blisters and swelling. If area of burn is smaller than 2-3 inches in diameter, it may be treated as a minor burn using guidelines shown above. If burn is larger or located on feet, face, eye, ears, major joints or groin, seek medical attention.
  • Third-degree burns involve all layers of skin and can lead to permanent tissue damage. The skin may appear charred, blackened or white with a dry or leathery texture. Seek medical attention immediately in cases of third-degree burns.

How long will it take to heal my burn?

Healing time depends on depth of burn. It can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks. For serious burns, surgery may be necessary.

Why does my burn itch? How can I relieve the itching?

Dry skin often itches, so applying lotion may help. A burn may also itch as nerves regenerate within the affected tissue. If itching is severe, medication may be prescribed.

Will my skin return to its normal color and appearance?

Scarring depends on the severity of the burn as well as genetic factors—some people scar more easily than others. If scarring becomes an issue, ask your physician about possible treatment. As your skin heals, it will also regain its pigment, but it may never return to the same color. Be sure to protect your skin from sun exposure by using sunscreen labeled SPF 50 or greater.

Why does my skin feel dry and tight?

The oil glands in the skin can be damaged by a burn. To remedy the dryness, try using a moisturizer or lotion for sensitive skin. Make sure it doesn’t contain irritants like perfumes or dyes. For severe burns, your care provider may recommend massage and stretching exercises as healing progresses and scar tissue matures.

Will I need to wear pressure garments?

If you have suffered a severe burn, your care provider may recommend pressure garments, which should be worn 23 out of 24 hours a day. The pressure garments are used during first year of healing to prevent overgrowth of collagen and subsequent scarring.