Specialty hospital now able to handle trauma cases

The state of Utah recognized Cache Valley Specialty Hospital (CVSH) as a certified trauma center on May 13, an honor that only 14 of the 43 hospitals in the state have.Emergency Department Manager, Niki Walker, said the process started about a year and a half ago and effects the entire hospital. All ancillary services had to meet the requirements, including the X-ray labs, operating rooms and the Intensive Care Unit.”It’s not just the emergency department,” Walker said, “you are making the goal to be able to coordinate all the resources so patients can have an improved outcome.”CVSH contracted with the University of Utah to have board-certified doctors work in the valley. Walker said they have a core of about 10 doctors that work full time at the hospital, and have access to all of U of U’s specialties and what they have to offer.Research is also a major part of a trauma center, taking the data from past trauma cases and figuring out what is happening the most in that area. That information then goes toward preventative measures and public education. Last year’s data showed that ground level falls and lack of helmet use were the main problems in the valley, Walker said.This past May, the hospital held a health fair and passed out over 125 bike helmets. Walker said they will probably do another push for helmet safety next year and follow the data to see if they need to do more patient education on safety.Walker said, for the most part, CVSH was ready for this trauma center certification. She said it was mainly a matter of updating procedures and policies but most of it was already in place and it was just a matter of connecting all the pieces.”Mainly when you look at it, the trauma care center is just a network for your hospital to care for your trauma patients,” she said. “The state just comes in and has certain standards that they want you to establish.”CVSH is also a certified stroke-ready hospital, the first in Cache Valley, and Walker said it has been important to educate the public on the importance of taking care of stroke patients.”A lot of people don’t understand how time sensitive stroke patients are, the certification helped us determine protocol for emergency medical services (EMS) and they now know they should be taken to nearest stroke facility,” she explained.

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