"Acute Care Surgery Division Continues to Expand,"
Jefferson Surgical Solutions: Vol. 1
, Article 3.
Available at: http://jdc.jefferson.edu/jss/vol1/iss3/3
The Acute Care Surgery Division treated more than 1200 trauma patients in 2006, continuing a rising trend in patient volume. And for good reason, says Murray Cohen, MD, Division Director. Jefferson is one of only 18 hospitals in the U.S. that are both an official Level 1 Regional Resource Trauma Center and a Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center. "More than 50 percent of our patients are referrals from other hospitals or community physicians," Dr. Cohen explains. "With such a large and growing number of cases, our surgeons are not only highly trained and skilled, but practiced as well. When a patient comes to us, we have seasoned, experienced surgeons at the ready, 24/7. It is what sets Jefferson apart from other facilities."
The division has six Board-certified surgeons on staff experienced in trauma, surgical critical care, and acute care surgery. "We have been practicing this triad of surgical care for some time now," says Dr. Cohen, "and the patients clearly benefit: with such a large volume of critically ill patients, we have developed all of the resources to care for them." This includes having veteran surgeons working nights and holidays as well as their regular shifts. The end result is that patients are treated by senior surgeons and receiving the highest level of care from the outset.
Kris Kaulback, MD, Associate Director of Trauma and Assistant Professor of Surgery, emphasizes the impact this division is having on health care providers in the region. "Community internists are beginning to recognize how vital it is to send patients to Jefferson first, and they are comfortable and confident that their patients will be well cared for," he says.
"With such a large and growing number of cases, our surgeons are not only highly trained and skilled, but practiced as well."
Patients are being brought to Jefferson by the emergency medical squads and by physician-initiated transfer from other hospitals. JeffSTAT, a medical transportation service owned and operated by Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, currently operates a fleet of 17 vehicles, including two medical helicopters. "The benefits to patients are obvious: better care and access. And it's not just more efficient for the hospitals to have a dedicated center — patients are treated faster as they come in the door by our experts on staff," says Dr. Kaulback, "It is all part of our commitment to putting the patient first."