Hospitals to be Recognized as Inaugural Members of Kentucky Trauma System
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 26, 2012) -- Trauma centers in Kentucky, including the Level I trauma centers at University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital and Kentucky Children's Hospital, will be recognized as part of the inaugural group of hospitals designated as members of the newly formed Kentucky Trauma Care System.
In all, 10 hospitals were recognized as part of the state's first official statewide trauma system during a luncheon on Friday, Oct. 26, at the Crowne Plaza Lexington during the 2012 Statewide Trauma and Emergency Medicine Symposium.
"This is recognition for these centers and how they are impacting a major health problem," said Dr. Andrew C. Bernard, UK trauma surgeon and chair of the State Trauma Advisory Committee, the committee responsible for directing the development and implementation of the Kentucky Trauma System. "In many ways this is the most significant advancement in the health of Kentuckians in the last 20 years and lives will be saved because of it."
The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Committee on Trauma verifies trauma centers as Level I to Level III based upon the resources available at that facility. In addition, the state's Trauma Advisory Committee has developed criteria that must be met by Level lV Trauma Centers. A Level I trauma center provides the greatest extent of trauma care services while Level IV trauma centers provide high quality initial trauma care locally and transfer to a higher level of trauma care if necessary.
The goal of the state trauma system is getting the 'right patient to the right place at the right time', said Bernard. It also provides education for doctors, nurses and paramedics to care for and assess severely injured patients, so that they are taken to the most appropriate facility as quickly as possible.
"It is important for a severely injured trauma patient not to linger at a hospital not equipped to deal with their injuries before being transported to a trauma center," Bernard said. "It is also important for a patient with non-life threatening injuries -- that can be appropriately cared for at a level III or IV center -- not be automatically sent to a level I center."
On Friday, trauma centers being recognized as part of the Kentucky Trauma System include:
- Level I trauma centers -- UK Chandler Hospital (Lexington), Kentucky Children's Hospital (Lexington), Kosair Children's Hospital (Louisville), and University of Louisville Hospital.
- Level III trauma centers -- Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center (Danville) and Taylor Regional Medical Center (Campbellsville)
- Level IV trauma centers -- Ephraim McDowell Fort Logan Hospital (Stanford), James B Haggin Memorial Hospital (Harrodsburg), Livingston Hospital (Salem) and Marcum & Wallace Hospital (Irvine)
In March 2008, Kentucky lawmakers passed House Bill 371 which established the initial framework of a statewide trauma system and the formation of the Kentucky Trauma Advisory Committee. The law encouraged the establishment of trauma centers and the drafting of written transport protocols for EMS providers to better define which patients require transfer to a trauma center. Additionally, the statewide trauma system provides better, standardized education for providers-- from first responders and EMT/paramedics, to nurses, physicians and even hospital administrators.
"Trauma could impact any of us at any time," Bernard said. "With this system in place, people who may have died due to their injuries in the past will be saved and patients who would have been severely disabled will recover and return to their normal lives."
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