In Virginia, the process of trauma designation is entirely voluntary. It is meant to identify those hospitals that make a commitment to providing a higher level of care for injured patients and who welcome public acknowledgment of that capability. The Virginia standards are reviewed and updated based on changes in the national standards, as well as the evolving needs of the Trauma System in Virginia.
No one can predict when an accident may happen. Similarly orthopedic trauma surgeons (traumatologists) cannot predict the types of injuries their patients may have sustained in an accident or the types of care that will be needed. Orthopedic traumatology is much more than just surgical intervention. While the initial main focus is on fracture care, it extends to soft tissue infections, ruptured tendons, and multiple system involvement. Each trauma patient has a unique plan of treatment, starting with the most urgent issues and continuing a more long term relationship with their orthopedic traumatologist with follow up care sometimes lasting 12-18 months after the initial trauma intervention.
For patients with multiple trauma injuries, pain management is critical for healing. Multimodal pain control options beginning at the initial trauma assessment, work to help patients reduce the use and side effects of opioids and narcotics.
Trauma patients don’t choose their orthopedic surgeon as you would for an elective orthopedic procedure. The good news for orthopedic trauma patients is the assurance that Sentara has already recruited the most skilled and experienced orthopedic traumatologists that are on call 24/7 at the two trauma centers, Level I Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Level III Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital. These surgeons also provide consultation for complicated orthopedic cases and some elective orthopedic procedures.
The goal is to restore the health of a traumatized patient to make it possible to return to work or other activities of life.
Sentara Norfolk General Hospital is designated a Level I Trauma Center, the highest level of trauma care.
Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital is designated a Level III Trauma Center.
Highlights of our emergency care include:
Trauma patients in Hampton Roads and Northeastern North Carolina may have their orthopedic care provided at either trauma center, with trauma surgeons coming from Eastern Virginia Medical School, Sentara Medical Group and private practice.
As a dedicated Level 1 Trauma Center, Sentara Norfolk General Hospital focuses mainly on trauma and serves as a referral center for complicated orthopedic cases.
“My motorcycle crash left me in the hospital for three weeks, and I needed six surgeries. We thought at first that it would take more than 18 months for me to walk again – my right leg was that bad – but I was back playing softball three times a week in less than 10 months.”