UVMC attains Level III Trauma Center designation

TROY — Upper Valley Medical Center (UVMC) has achieved designation as Level III Trauma Center from the Ohio Department of Public Safety. The designation follows a trauma survey conducted in mid-July.

“Consumers tell us over and over that, if they have a choice, they would much rather stay in the community and receive the care they need, if possible. This will provide them that access,” said Candy Skidmore, RN, CHEP, Premier Health vice president for emergency and trauma service lines.

UVMC joins Premier Health’s trauma network, which includes Miami Valley Hospital’s Level I Trauma Center, Atrium Medical Center’s Level III Trauma Center and Miami Valley Hospital South’s Level III Trauma Center.

“We congratulate our trauma team for this significant achievement,” Kevin Harlan, UVMC president, said. “Trauma III status recognizes that UVMC provides the expertise, teamwork, and facilities necessary to treat a higher level of injuries than ever before. This is another example of the UVMC/Premier Health dedication to providing quality health care for our communities.”

“Many of our physicians and staff, as well as area EMS squads, have put in a tremendous amount of time and effort working toward this important accomplishment,” said Scott Kanagy, UVMC chief medical officer. “It requires a carefully coordinated, dedicated effort to assure that the strict trauma center standards are met and maintained round-the-clock.”

In the months of preparation for the Level III designation, UVMC operated internally as a trauma center, working continuously to refine processes even more, according to Pradeesh George, DO, hospital trauma medical director.

Trauma center levels are based on depth of available resources for treating trauma patients as well as the quality of care provided. Characteristics of Level III trauma centers include providing rapid care for all forms of traumatic injury and offering 24-hour immediate coverage by trauma surgeons.

Trauma care is vital. Each year in the United States some 150,000 deaths are caused by trauma and another 3 million people receive non-fatal injuries, according to George. Offering quality trauma care to area residents close to home is key.

“The real issue is we have a lot of people who have to travel to get trauma care,” George said. “The opportunity here is to bring care closer to home. Trauma isn’t just about what happens when you get injured. It is also about your follow up appointments, your rehabilitation.”

Those trauma patients for whom more complex and intensive care is required than can be done locally will be stabilized at UVMC and transferred to Miami Valley Hospital, Dayton’s most experienced Level I trauma center.

All the players are in place to make a “phenomenal” trauma program at the hospital, from the emergency department to the operating room to rehab, Dr. George said. “I like to say it’s the 100 hands of trauma. It is not just one person. It is everybody involved in the program. It starts in the field with EMS,” he said.

Among trauma cases coming to the Emergency Department would be falls, farm accidents, industrial accidents, motorcycle crashes, and head injuries, often from falls.