In a recent report, Pittsburgh’s West Penn was placed among the top 100 hospitals in the country. It is one of the hospitals in the Allegheny Health Network, commended for having some of the shortest wait times for emergency care in the region. The hospitals in Pittsburgh cover all aspects of medical treatment from urgent care walk in clinics to Level 1 trauma centers. As another top level hospital, according to the US News Honor Roll of Best Hospitals, UPMC Presbyterian provides round the clock emergency care for every aspect of injury. Here, and at other trauma centers around the city, the victims of road traffic accidents in Pittsburgh will be treated.
Safety And Protection
The emergency rooms all over Pennsylvania are kept busy dealing with trauma caused by car crashes. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transport (PennDOT), over 200 people were injured in crashes every day in 2017. Obviously, PennDOT and local hospitals would like to see this number reduced. Each year, federal funding is used for a Highway Safety Improvement Program, aimed at reducing serious injuries on the roads. For their own protection, the state also requires drivers to have at least the minimum amounts of coverage for their car. An unexpected visit to ER can be costly, but this basic insurance also includes first party medical coverage.
Impact On Trauma Units
Encouragingly, 2017 also saw the lowest number of traffic related deaths in Pennsylvania since PennDOT records began. However, according to the CDC, for every individual killed in a traffic accident, 99 people are treated in ER. Road accidents clearly put a huge strain on trauma units. Treatment has to be rapid and is often very complex, involving a large team of specialist doctors and nurses, scans and other investigative procedures. The trauma center at UPMC Presbyterian is the busiest in the state, dealing with up to 12,000 adult patients each year.
Training To Save Lives
Both West Penn and UPMC Presbyterian are important teaching hospitals, and ongoing training for medical staff is an essential element of improving ER treatment and saving more lives. As well as conventional teaching methods, using a video game developed by a University of Pittsburgh critical care doctor could help further improve the success rates of emergency room doctors and nurses.
The impact of road traffic accidents on the emergency departments of Pittsburgh’s hospitals is significant, simply because of the large numbers involved. However, as well as offering top ranking service and shorter than average wait times, the county’s hospitals and trauma centers are well equipped, and ready to deal with any type of serious injury.