Trauma & Acute Care Surgery at Elliot Hospital
Trauma Surgery Designation
Trauma hospitals are ranked, not officially designated, by the American College of Surgeons (ACS). The different levels refer to the kinds of resources available in a trauma center and the number of patients admitted yearly. These are categories that define national standards for trauma care in hospitals. Some states have their own trauma-center rankings separate from the ACS.
The levels usually range from Level I to Level IV. A Level I Trauma Hospital usually designates a full complement of medical personnel, equipment, beds and specialty care to support the sickest of the traumatically injured patients. Through out the various other levels (II-V) simply means that there are perhaps not as many medical professionals, access to surgical specialty care or resources available. This system is designed that any Trauma center should be able to provide stabilizing care to the traumatically injured and then allow for transfer to another facility for definitive management.
Collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Trauma, Emergency Surgery and Surgical Critical Care
In 2009 Elliot Hospital and the Division of Trauma, Emergency Surgery, and Surgical Critical Care (TESSCC) at Massachusetts General Hospital joined efforts in a collaboration to further develop the Trauma System in Southern New Hampshire. Known as the Queen City, Manchester is the geographical center of the three largest and most populous counties of New Hampshire (Hillsboro, Merrimack, and Rockingham provide a total combined population of 854,253; 65% of NH total, 2010 US Census). Southern New Hampshire is home to several hospitals that provide care for our local trauma patients, with access to several Level-1 Trauma Centers in Northern New England including MGH in Boston, Mass. However due in part to long winters and weather conditions that limit transportation options, the nearest level 1 Trauma Centers may be over an hour away (see maps included). This introduces an unacceptable delay in potentially life-saving interventions beyond what may be available at local hospitals. With an excellent reputation for providing quality care to its community, Elliot Hospital was a perfect fit to initiate a novel means of collaboration with a local Level 1 Trauma Center and build an overlapping network of trauma centers in Northern New England.
We at the Elliot and at Massachusetts General Hospital understand that trauma remains the number one cause of death and disability worldwide. In the US it remains the number one cause of death in those under the age of 41 years of age, leading to a tremendous loss of productive work years and a major financial burden for our health care system. As a Trauma System we have grown to understand the importance of rapid transport times, combined with assessment and management of life threatening injuries in order to reduce morbidity and mortality. In order to optimize care provided at local trauma centers and improve access to potentially life-saving definitive care, we have teamed up with Massachusetts General Hospital to forge a local Trauma and Acute Care Surgery Network (TRACSNET).