The cost of injuries is staggering, costing billions of dollars in health care and social support services. An estimated 30,000 Iowans are rushed each year to hospitals for emergency evaluation and treatment due to injury. This costs Iowans in increased medical expense and lost time in work and wages.
The 1995 state legislative session established the Iowa Trauma Care System Development Act. It designated the Iowa Department of Public Health through its Bureau of Emergency Medical Services as the lead agency for trauma care system development and implementation. Iowa's trauma system went "online" January 1, 2001.
The goal of Iowa's trauma system is to match the injured patient's needs to existing resources so optimal and cost-effective care is achieved. A systems approach to trauma care involves the collaboration of health care providers across the continuum of care extending from prevention, to acute care, through rehabilitation. This system approach will reduce costs, disability and death associated with traumatic injury.
All hospitals, transporting ambulance service programs, and rehabilitation centers are participating in Iowa's trauma system, which makes it an all inclusive system.
Cherokee Regional Medical Center has successfully completed the categorization and re-verification process to be re-certified as a Community Trauma Care Facility. Hospitals must re-apply every three years to participate in Iowa's trauma system, and based on availability of resources.
Community Trauma Care Facilities, such as Cherokee Regional Medical Center, are most often located in rural areas and have the resources to provide initial stabilization of all trauma patients while preparing the patient for transfer when appropriate. If surgical and/or critical care intervention is necessary the patient may be transferred to an Area, Regional, or Resource Trauma Care Facility.
Some Community Trauma Care Facilities have surgical capabilities.
Iowa's trauma system is designed to assure that all people throughout the state have access to an organized delivery system for trauma care and all time critically injured patients are rapidly stabilized and provided with the appropriate resources necessary to care for their injuries.
Iowa's trauma care system is an "all-inclusive" system involving out-of-hospital emergency medical services (EMS) providers and hospital medical providers throughout the state. The system also assists ambulance service programs in determining appropriate trauma care facility destination based upon the patient's condition and travel time.
Leading the Cherokee Regional Medical Center categorization and re-verification process was Dr. Timothy Rice, Trauma Service and Emergency Department Medical Director, and Dondee Halverson, RN, Emergency Room Manager.
Connie Mohn, Vice President of Nursing and Regulatory for CRMC, stated "This re-certification is part of our ongoing commitment to provide the highest quality emergency trauma care to the community we serve. All of those involved with emergency and trauma services provided by Cherokee Regional Medical Center have worked very hard to maintain this high standard of care."