The trauma program at Augusta University Health has been verified as an adult Level I trauma center and a pediatric Level II trauma center by the Verification Review Committee, an ad hoc committee of the Committee on Trauma of the American College of Surgeons.
This achievement recognizes the trauma program’s dedication to providing optimal care for injured patients. Level I is the highest stamp of approval and AU Health is the only one in the area to receive that designation.
A center must meet the essential criteria established by the ACS that ensures trauma care capabilities are available when needed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, and that institutional high performance is maintained.
“While AU Health has operated for more than 30 years as the region’s only provider of Level I adult trauma care, verification from the ACS goes beyond state-level designation and affirms that AU’s trauma program meets essential criteria for being one of the best in the country,” said Regina Medeiros, Trauma Program director at AU Health. “The work and dedication of the entire team is what has allowed us to achieve this validation of excellence in the management of critically injured adult and pediatric patients.”
Established by the ACS in 1987, the Committee on Trauma’s Consultation/Verification Program for Hospitals promotes the development of trauma centers in which participants provide not only the hospital resources necessary for trauma care but also the entire spectrum of care to address the needs of all injured patients. This spectrum encompasses the prehospital phase through the rehabilitation process.
Verified trauma centers must meet the essential criteria that ensure trauma care capability and institutional performance, as outlined by the ACS’s Committee on Trauma in its current Resources for Optimal Care of the Injured Patient manual.
The ACS Committee on Trauma’s verification program does not designate trauma centers. Rather, the program provides confirmation that a trauma center has demonstrated its commitment to providing the highest quality trauma care for all injured patients. The actual establishment and the designation of trauma centers is the function of local, regional or state health care systems agencies, such as the local emergency medical services authority.
There are five separate categories of verification in the Committee on Trauma’s program. Each category has specific criteria that must be met by a facility seeking that level of verification. Each hospital has an on-site review by a team of experienced site reviewers, who use the current Resources for the Optimal Care of the Injured Patient manual as a guideline in conducting the survey.
The ACS is a scientific and educational association of surgeons that was founded in 1913 to raise the standards of surgical education and practice and to improve the care of the surgical patient. The College has over 72,000 members, and it is the largest association of surgeons in the world. Longstanding achievements have placed the ACS at the forefront of American surgery and have made it an important advocate for all surgical patients.