St. Louis Children’s Hospital Receives American College of Surgeons Verification as a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center
The American College of Surgeons (ACS) has formally verified St. Louis Children’s Hospital as a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center, elevating its already premier status in trauma care.
St. Louis Children’s is the only pediatric hospital in Missouri and Illinois to receive this national verification.
“Receiving ACS trauma verification means that St. Louis Children’s Hospital has met the highest standards set for a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center and has taken the hospital to another level of expertise and the highest level of preparation to care for injured children,” says Trauma Manager Diana Kraus, RN, BSN.
Unparalleled expertise in pediatric trauma care is the reason Joe and Cecilia Detwiler are alive today, according to their father, Mike Detwiler.
|Joe and Cecilia Detwiler's family members say they wouldn't be alive today without the Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Team at St. Louis Children's Hospital.|
During a family trip to the lake in St. James, MO, Joe (17) and Cecilia (15) were in a horrific car accident that nearly amputated Cecilia’s leg, and caused traumatic injuries to Joe that left him in a coma for nearly a month.
“I remember thinking my kids are so far away from a hospital. What are we going to do,” says Mike Detwiler.
While there were other hospitals geographically closer, St. Louis Children’s was the closest Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center. Kraus believes paramedics’ decision to transport the Detwilers to Children’s made the difference between life and death.
“Had they gone to another, non level-one hospital, they would not be here today,” says Kraus.
The process to achieve ACS verification began for St. Louis Children’s Hospital in 2008, when the hospital decided its commitment to the voluntary program would build on its goal of providing the best possible care to its pediatric patients.
Some requirements and attributes of an ACS-verified pediatric trauma program include:
- The highest level of staffing, skills and facilities to provide pediatric surgical care to injured patients.
- Pediatric specialists in neurosurgery, radiology, anesthesia, orthopedics, emergency medicine and critical care medicine who have all completed 16 hours of continuing medical education beyond the requirements of their own practice and medical education.
- Dedicated trauma social worker
- Nurses who care for injured patients must be credentialed in trauma care.
- Performance improvement efforts to ensure that each patient experience leads to the best possible outcome by providing optimal care from the time of injury to rehab.
The American College of Surgeons is a scientific and educational association of surgeons that was founded in 1913 to improve the quality of care for the surgical patient by setting high standards for surgical education and practice. Through its Committee on Trauma, they work to improve the care of injured and critically ill patients –before, en route, and during hospitalization.
The Committee on Trauma’s goal is to improve all phases of the management of the injured patient including pre-hospital care and transportation, hospital care, and rehabilitation; to prevent injuries in the home, in industry, on the highway, and during participation in sports; to provide education to improve trauma care; and to cooperate with other national organizations with similar objectives. *(www.facs.org)
“We know that parents have a choice of where they take their children, and we hope they recognize the importance of choosing a hospital that offers comprehensive services specific to children,” she says. “We also rely on our EMS colleagues and what they do at the scene, which allows us to do what we do here so kids get the best outcome possible.”
Nearly two years after the accident, and Joe and Cecilia Detwiler are back in school, studying and enjoying their lives as teenagers.
“No one in their right mind would say that’s physically possible,” says Mike Detwiler.
St. Louis Children's Hospital has provided specialized care for children for more than 130 years. Both US News & World Report and Parents magazine rank St. Louis Children’s among the Top 10 pediatric hospitals in the nation. In 2010 the hospital received the Magnet re-designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the nation’s highest honor for nursing excellence. St. Louis Children’s Hospital is affiliated with Washington University School of Medicine, one of the leading medical research, teaching and patient care institutions in the nation. The hospital is a member of BJC HealthCare. For more information, visit www.StLouisChildrens.org, or visit us @STLChildrens on Facebook and Twitter.