Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg recognised as Level 2 Trauma Centre
Posted on 30 October 2019
March 2019 saw Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg become the first Mediclinic facility to receive a level 2 accreditation from the Trauma Society of South Africa (TSSA).
“Trauma has become such a large contributor to emergency surgical and orthopaedic workload at our hospitals. To ensure that our patients receive the best possible care, our clinical teams are investing in proven systems to improve our service delivery offering,” explains Frikkie Botha, Operations Executives for Mediclinic Southern Africa.
According to the Trauma Society of South Africa, a trauma centre is a comprehensive unit where specialities and sub-specialties together with allied health professionals provide initial assessment, quality resuscitation and definitive care to hasten the recovery of the patient with appropriate rehabilitation facilities.
Dr Melanie Stander, Emergency Medicine Manager for Mediclinic Southern Africa highlights that, “By including the entire spectrum of caregivers, the process results in better outcomes for patients and has been shown to improve overall care.” This integration includes emergency medical services into the trauma matrix and developing sufficient communication between facilities to ensure that the right patient receives the right level of care within a defined optimal period of time.
“Management at Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg took the decision to have the hospital’s ability to manage trauma independently assessed by the TSSA in order for it to be designated appropriately, and to ensure that the hospital is correctly placed within the greater trauma system in the region. In a process that involved rigorous quality verification, audits and system checks with ground level staff input, the level 2 accreditation of our facility has reinforced the quality of our hospital in Pietermaritzburg,” says Tabitha Lolliot, Hospital General Manager, Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg.
The tendency amongst the public however is sometimes to confuse trauma centres with emergency centres, where initial emergency care is provided to all emergencies, including trauma. Hospitals may have one designation level of emergency centre and another level of trauma designation.
A Trauma Centre is a facility with sub-specialty personnel, infrastructure and medical equipment. Their primary purpose is the care of patients that have been severely injured, usually to the extent that multiple organ systems are affected.
“As a designated level 2 trauma centre, Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg, which is situated at the doorstep of the greater Midlands population, assumes the role of a delegated authority to improve outcomes through outreach and in-reach,” explains Dr Daniel Fiandeiro, Emergency Medicine Specialist at Mediclinic Pietermaritzburg.
“Given our strategic location along the N3 corridor, we are proud of the fact that we have been able to amalgamate the skills of many talented individuals to provide a safe and much needed service that extends from Harrismith to Matatiele,” says Lolliot.
Dr Stander concludes, “Trauma care is being refined in South Africa, a country with a great legacy of trauma surgical leadership and innovation. Through the Trauma Society of South Africa, our anticipation is that more public and private facilities will achieve levels of accreditation thereby improving outcomes for patients affected by life threatening trauma.”