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UK can learn from US Trauma System

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12 Dec 2013

A leading trauma specialist has explained how the development of the US trauma system could serve as a lesson for countries such as the UK, who are seeking to implement more effective emergency services.

Writing in this issue of Surgeons’ News, Dr Ernest Moore, who was Chief of Trauma and Surgery at Denver General Hospital for over 35 years and edits the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, discusses how the introduction of regional trauma systems resulted in an 8-10% reduction in mortality by 1998.

However, Dr Moore cautioned against an over-abundance of designated trauma centres: “The US population is over 300 million and we currently have 200 Level-1 board-certified trauma centres. Based on the current understanding that one level-1 Trauma Centre is needed per 2.5 million population, we could provide adequate acute services for the US with around 120 of such units. This reduction could be what you see in the US over the next decade.”

Ernest Moore will deliver the Lister Legacy Lecture at the RCSEd’s President’s Meeting on Friday 21 March 2014.

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