Rural Trauma Team Development Course improves patient treatment

Local Hospital staff in training including Corazon Villeri, RN, Tony Corrasco, RN and Concha Urias, LVN

front row, concha urias, Tony carrasco, Corazon Villero, Gabrielle Haynes, Vickie Farmer, Gayla Owen, Kayla Black, mandi Gary, Valeria Blair. Back row is Sara Seagrove, Richard Buck, Kathleen Christian, Mary Lou Corralez, Tony Velasquez, Morris Gilmore, Monica Kessler, Angela Peterson, Lori Baggerly, Todd Haugen, Judy Palmer, Cheryl Owen, Dr Flaherty and Dr. Sidwell. 

Photos contributed by Culberson County Hospital

Contributed by Mehdy Dawal-Osorio

RN, BSN, Culberson Hospital CNO

On Monday, Culberson Hospital hosted the Rural Trauma Team Development Course (RTTDC), a course that was developed in 1998 by the American College of Surgeons in response to a growing number of deaths in rural areas due to trauma. According to Dr. Ronald M. Steward, MD, FACS Chairman of the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma, “While only 19 percent of the United States population lives in rural regions, 54 percent of all motor vehicle crash deaths occur in rural America. With respect to all injury deaths, rural Americans are 50% more likely to die from trauma than their urban neighbors.”  The course included lecture and hands on learning through the utilization of skill stations and scenarios.  Areas of discussion focused on trauma team dynamics, utilization of available and often limited resources, building relationships within the regional trauma system and critical elements of injury resuscitation.

This was the first time that this course has been offered in the West Texas region and the attendance was phenomenal.  The course was attended by 15 providers from Culberson Hospital; to include nursing, EMS, and medical staff. In addition, Culberson Hospital welcomed providers from Big Bend Regional Medical Center in Alpine, TX, Scleicher County Medical Center in Eldorado, TX and the Border RAC. Normally, providers must travel to larger cities to receive this type of training which makes it difficult for a facility like Culberson Hospital to send a large group.

Culberson Hospital is very grateful to the following presenters of the course for making this training possible to so many:

-Dr. Richard Sidwell M.D.  FACS, RTTDC Program Chair, American College of Surgeons

-Dr. Stephen Flaherty M. D. FACS, Trauma Medical Director, Del Sol Medical Center

-Todd Haugen, Licensed Paramedic, Director EMS Relations, Las Palmas/Del Sol Health Car

-Valeria Blair, RN, CEN, Administrative Director Trauma Services, Del Sol Medical Center

-Sara Seagrove, RN, CEN, Outreach Coordinator Las Palmas/Del Sol Health Care

According to Dr. Richard Sidwell, “All day long I found myself thinking that all of the participants were interested and engaged.  When we were at the hospital, I found everyone smiling, happy and clearly committed to the important work that you are all doing.”

Van Horn is located in a unique area lying between larger cities at least 100 miles away in any direction. Typically, serious traumatic injuries are treated by Trauma Centers in El Paso.  Often it is necessary to treat and stabilize these critical patients and the training received through this course has strengthened the foundation of trauma care at Culberson Hospital making it an important link in the treatment and continuum of care of the critical trauma patient.  By bringing a course like this to the rural areas, a greater number of our providers are able to participate in the hands on learning experiences which translate into improved treatment of the patient.