You probably think your health is determined mostly by family history, but there’s one health risk you share with everyone––trauma. No matter what your age or genetics are, if you’re involved in an accident, you could suffer life-threatening injuries that require traumatic care.
In the U.S., trauma causes 42 million emergency visits and two million hospital admissions annually, according to the Center for Disease Control. While some injuries can be treated at local emergency rooms, the survival rate for serious injuries is better when patients are sent to Level I trauma centers like the one at Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital.
There are three lower levels of care, but treatment at one of the nation’s Level I trauma centers can trim your risk of death by 25 percent. To be classified as such, Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital is required to have certain resources that equip them to handle the most serious injuries 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Among the requirements are specialty surgeons plus a supportive cast of experts in radiology, anesthesiology and emergency medicine. The experts at IU Health Methodist Hospital Trauma Center treat more than 3,500 complex trauma patients each year, making them the ninth busiest trauma center in the nation.
Level I centers also maintain a research program, assume a leadership role in trauma education and injury prevention, and become a treatment resource for communities in nearby regions.
In our next post, Todd McKinley, M.D., an orthopedic trauma surgeon at Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital, explains how doctors are working together to improve trauma research and treatment.