Hospital receives trauma designation

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recently renewed Northfield Hospital’s designation as a Level 4 trauma hospital.

The designation affirms that Northfield Hospital’s Emergency Department staff has trauma-specific training and protocols in place to facilitate rapid management of the patient. With the designation, Northfield Hospital is included in Minnesota’s statewide trauma system

“The goal of a trauma system is to decrease an injured patient’s time to care by making sure their medical needs are appropriately matched with hospital resources,” said Minnesota Commissioner of Health Dr. Edward Ehlinger.

Trauma is the third leading cause of death, Dr. Ehlinger said. On average, trauma claims the lives of 2,400 Minnesotans annually. For severely injured people, the time between sustaining an injury and receiving definitive care is the most important predictor of survival, according to health officials. States with trauma systems have seen survival rates increase by 15 to 20 percent.

Northfield Hospital first received a trauma designation in 2009. Hospitals need to be re-designated every three years. The designation is based on an outside review of its resources and capacity to care for trauma patients. Northfield Hospital met standards for commitment, clinical and equipment resources and staff training. The hospital also participates in a continuous improvement process.

Deb Maestri, Director of Northfield Hospital’s Emergency Department, says participation in the State Trauma Registry contributes to improved outcomes for patients involved in tragic accidents.

“Throughout the year, we continue to train our staff and strive to provide outstanding patient care which translates into an excellent patient experience,” Maestri said.