Trauma system goes live here

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 22, 2014

Both Andalusia Regional Hospital and Opp’s Mizell Memorial Hospital are part of a trauma system that went live in Southeast Alabama yesterday.

Amy Herrington, ER director at ARH, said the system is similar to a stroke system already in place. When EMS workers calls a trauma communication center with details of trauma they have encountered, they are advised of the closest hospital with the ability to take care for that type of trauma.

“There are guidelines as far as transport time,” Herrington said. “ If it is outside of an hour, they don’t want you to bypass another hospital sometimes. But it will really do well for patients in outlying areas, so they will get routed to a hospital that can take care of them the first time.”

For instance, she said, if there is an orthopedic case and a hospital doesn’t have orthopedic coverage on a certain day, that patient can be taken to the nearest hospital with the ability to treat the injury.

Patients still have the right to choose where they wish to be treated if they are conscious and alert, she said.

There are 18 counties in the Southeast region, and 13 participating hospitals.

Prior to yesterday’s inclusion of the Southeast Region, there were 41 trauma centers in the trauma system, the ADPH reported. The activation of the Southeast region will brought 13 more trauma centers into the system, resulting in statewide coverage.

There are 167 ground and two air units in Region Five, and 1,166 ground and 12 air units statewide. In addition, eight out-of-state air units are operating in Alabama.


Regions that are already participating in the trauma system have noted reduced hospital stays, which indicates timely trauma center arrivals to the appropriate hospital with the resources to treat their injuries, the ADPH reported.

Herrington said participating hospitals completed an inspection process, must adhere to very specific policies and protocols, and signed a contract with the with state.

The trauma system will operate in Autauga, Barbour, Bullock, Butler, Coffee, Covington, Crenshaw, Dale, Elmore, Geneva, Henry, Houston, Lee, Lowndes, Macon, Montgomery, Pike and Russell counties.

These are the Southeast Region trauma centers and their designation levels. A Level II designation means a hospital can accept more complex cases than a Level III hospital.

• Andalusia Regional Hospital, Level III

• Baptist Medical Center South, Level II

• Community Hospital, Level III

• Dale Medical Center, Level III

• East Alabama Medical Center, Level III

• Flowers Hospital, Provisional Level II

• Jackson Hospital, Level III

• L.V. Stabler Memorial Hospital, Level III

• Medical Center Barbour, Level III

• Medical Center Enterprise, Level III

• Mizell Memorial Hospital, Level III

• Southeast Alabama Medical Center, Level II

• Troy Regional Medical Center, Level III