A trauma center (or trauma centre) is a hospital equipped and staffed to provide care for patients suffering from major traumatic injuries such as falls, motor vehicle collisions, or gunshot wounds. A trauma center may also refer to an emergency department (also known as a "casualty department" or "accident & emergency") without the presence of specialized services to care for victims of major trauma.
Essential to the development of a trauma care system is the designation of definitive trauma care facilities. The trauma care system is a network of definitive care facilities that provides a spectrum of care for all injured patients. These lead hospitals should be the highest level available within the trauma system.
A Level II Trauma Center is able to initiate definitive care for all injured patients. Elements of Level II Trauma Centers Include: 24-hour immediate coverage by general surgeons, as well as coverage by the specialties of orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, radiology and critical care.
Level III trauma centers are smaller community hospitals that have services to care for patients with moderate injuries and the ability to stabilize the severe trauma patient in preparation for transport to a higher level trauma center. A Level III Trauma Center demonstrates an ability to provide prompt assessment, resuscitation, surgery, intensive care and stabilization of injured patients and emergency operations.
Major trauma is any injury that has the potential to cause prolonged disability or death. There are many causes of major trauma, blunt and penetrating, including falls, motor vehicle collisions, and stabbing and gunshot wounds.
The formation of a Trauma Alert Team shall provide all trauma patients and their families with optimal care by skilled trauma providers, thereby insuring patients the best clinical outcomes achievable. (C) Procedure. Definition of a "Trauma Alert" resuscitation and management of severely injured patients.
There is a substantial difference between the care a patient receives at Emergency Departments (frequently called the "Emergency Room") and Trauma Centers. Most hospitals have an Emergency Department; this is where patients come with emergency illnesses and injuries, some of which may be life-threatening.
A medical emergency is an acute injury or illness that poses an immediate risk to a person's life or long-term health.
Major trauma describes serious injuries that are life changing and could result in death or serious disability, including head injuries, severe wounds and multiple fractures. Major trauma centers are set up to provide specialized trauma care and rehabilitation. They are hubs that work closely with local trauma units.
Traumatic injury is a term which refers to physical injuries of sudden onset and severity which require immediate medical attention. The insult may cause systemic shock called “shock trauma”, and may require immediate resuscitation and interventions to save life and limb.