Dr. Cleo Finch was a doctor who worked at County General Hospital in Chicago. She was portrayed by Michael Michele from 1999 to 2001.
Cleo was first introduced at the beginning of the season as a skilled new pediatric fellow at County. She was portrayed as a hard working, no-nonsense, competent doctor who often jogged to work. In the episode, “How the Finch Stole Christmas," Cleo separated a young alcoholic patient from his alcoholic mother, who fed his addiction during the Christmas holiday.
Cleo misdiagnosed a bratty, 4-year-old girl which resulted in her death in the episode, "Sins of the Father." In the episode, "All in the Family," when no surgeons were available to perform a laparotomy on a dying patient, Cleo performed an emergency thoracotomy in the OR to stabilize the patient until a surgeon could be found. At first, Dr. Peter Benton reprimanded her, but he later apologized to her. Cleo and Peter also start a relationship with each other.
Cleo is now a 3rd year resident in emergency medicine and pediatrics. When Peter's deceased nephew's girlfriend, Kynesha moves in with Cleo, Kynesha and her friend, Tiny steal Cleo's car which prompts her to tell Peter that she wants her out of her house. When Kynesha is placed in a foster home, Peter and Cleo come home to Cleo's house and discover that Kynesha has trashed Cleo's home.
Cleo also appears to get along well with Peter's deaf son, Reese. Cleo often clashed with Reese’s mother Carla, who saw Cleo as interfering in her family’s decisions. While under Cleo’s care, Reese accidentally injured his hand on a piano, leading Carla to claim she was untrustworthy and irresponsible. Cleo’s relationship with Peter was also put under strain when Peter felt that Cleo’s multi-racial background prevented her from understanding the medical and cultural needs of the African-American community.
In the season finale, Cleo accidently cuts herself on a vial of an HIV-positive patient's blood and worries she might have contracted the virus.
In the season premiere, Cleo is seen taking anti-retrovirals which make her somewhat ill. Later, Cleo discovers that she is not HIV-positive.
Cleo left County for a job at a private hospital just outside of Chicago. Later in the season, after winning his custody battle over Reese, Peter also departed from County as well to work at the same hospital as Cleo. Their final appearance was in the episode, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” where they are shown helping Reese decorate a Christmas Tree. Cleo is seen at Mark Greene's funeral with Peter. When Peter makes an appearance in the final season with Reese, it is speculated that Peter married Cleo, and they raised Reese together.
- Mother (name unknown)
- Father (name unknown)
- Peter Benton (husband)
- Reese Benton (stepson)
Medical Titles at County GeneralEdit
- Pediatrics Resident (1999-2001)