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Published on November 28, 2012

Crozer Regional Trauma Center Achieves Reaccreditation

Team Approach Includes Support from Reorganized Surgical Trauma Unit

The Crozer Regional Trauma Center recently achieved a three-year reaccreditation by the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation (PTSF). Reaccreditation requires a commitment by the institution’s Board of Directors, administration, medical staff, nursing staff, and support staff to provide care to all trauma patients receiving treatment at the trauma center in accordance with/to the optimal standard of trauma care as articulated in the American College of Surgeons standards and PTSF standards.

This optimal standard of care requires all services to be available and “standing ready” 24 hours a day, seven days a week – a commitment that differentiates a trauma center from other healthcare institutions.

“Receiving a full 3-year reaccreditation for the fifth time in a row is an example of the administrative commitment to supporting the multidisciplinary team of surgeons, nurses and support staff at Crozer. The accreditation is a testament to the team’s hard work and to achieving a higher level of care every year,” says Raid Cachecho, M.D., medical director of Trauma Program at Crozer.  

One recent change that has improved trauma care was the reorganization of Crozer’s fourth floor nursing units. The change has allowed for the separation of surgical and trauma patients. Specifically, the Shock Trauma Unit was relocated to the Cardiovascular Unit, which was renamed the Surgical Trauma Unit (STU), and the unit was designated for providing critical care for the trauma and surgical patient.  

The STU is now a dedicated eight-bed intensive/critical care unit for the most critically injured trauma patients and critical surgical patients. The unit is staffed with skilled critical care nurses with the specialized training and experience required to care for these injuries and surgical treatments. The nursing staff actively participates in the daily multidisciplinary team rounds with the trauma surgeons, who are also boarded in critical care, trauma nurse practitioners, surgical residents, a dedicated pharmacist and respiratory therapist.  

“It’s an ideal situation for the nursing team. The unit is smaller and organized to be more efficient. With the unit being dedicated specifically to trauma and surgical patients, the nursing staff can contribute to the development of initiatives to improve the quality of surgical care; and not only does the nursing staff recognize the opportunity for positive change but the patients will benefit from the effects,” says Debra Lillback, R.N., director of the Trauma Program.

Separating the ICU patients and surgical trauma patients allows for a better continuum of care because every patient in the surgical trauma unit is being prepared for surgery and because the unit is smaller with fewer visitors come through the unit, infection control is also better maintained, Lillback says. The STU is closely supervised to allow only a few visitors at a time, giving the patient an opportunity to rest and receive the care needed for a faster recovery. Trauma patients and their families have a dedicated social worker who specializes in the needs of a traumatic injury.

The new STU conference room located directly outside the STU offers a good location for the rounding team to meet with patients’ families to discuss treatment plans. The STU conference room is also utilized for weekly trauma multidisciplinary conference in which the discharge plan for all trauma patients is reviewed and discussed by the multidisciplinary team.  The STU conference room has also been used for educational programming and other meetings for the STU team.

The STU efficiency and coordination of care reduces patients’ length of stay in critical care and works to help patients continue their recovery following transfer out.  Within 48 hours after a patient is transferred from STU to the Step-down Unit, a STU nurse visits the patient and consults with step-down nurses to assure continuity of care. Cachecho is the medical director of both the STU and the Step-Down Unit (SDU). The multidisciplinary rounding team continues to provide care for the trauma patient on SDU and the 1 West medical/surgical unit until discharge.

The Crozer Regional Trauma Center has been a leader in trauma care since opening its doors in December of 1986 as one of the very first to be accredited by the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation. Crozer was one of only nine hospitals to receive the designation out of the 53 hospitals across the state applied for designation as a trauma center that year.

More than a quarter of a century later, the Crozer Regional Trauma Center remains a regional and state leader in trauma care. It is one of 31 PTSF-accredited trauma centers statewide and remains the only trauma center in Delaware County. The center serves the entire population of Delaware County as well as portions of neighboring counties and states. 

Crozer’s trauma team is dedicated to helping patients and their families with the unique needs and challenges of the sudden and sometimes catastrophic effects of traumatic injuries, motor vehicle crashes, falls, gunshot wounds and stabbing wounds.

For more information about the Crozer Regional Trauma Center, visit http://ckhstrauma.crozerkeystone.org.

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