Our Trauma Program has matured over the past years. We have experimented with a number of new documentation tools as well as the use of ultrasonography in blunt and penetrating trauma. One of our faculty is a national instructor for the American College of Surgeons Ultrasonography Course.
Our Critical Care Program continues to gather more complete data on our patients who are cared for in our Surgical Intensive Care Unit and we continue our study of patient safety and quality investigations in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit. These are collaborative programs with the hospital as a partner. The SICU participates in the 100,000 Lives Campaign in the hospital. This project is attempting to reduce pneumonia in our patients on mechanical ventilation.
We've also invested heavily in developing a clinical and laboratory research program. We had multiple residents spend one or two years working on clinical or basic research, many of whom first authored several publications. We have a very active summer student research program, enrolling four students each summer. Several of these projects have led to publications or national presentations.
One of our most productive areas of research involves collaboration with other interested clinician-scientists in the Injury Research Center which is one of ten federally funded centers in the country. We are also one of ten North American sites for ground breaking prehospital resuscitation research. Several of our faculty are also nationally recognized for their educational research.
The trauma program is a Froedtert Hospital clinical program that is identified as a special activity of the hospital. The medical staff recognizes it as an important part of Froedtert Hospital's identity. This multidisciplinary program crosses many specialty lines dedicated to the care of the injured within the hospital's community. The entire program is designed to be consistent with the mandates of the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma, as published in Resources for Optimal Care of the Injured Patient, 1999. We remain the only Adult Level I Trauma Center in southeastern Wisconsin.
Our trauma service is staffed by faculty members of the Division of Trauma, Critical Care, and Acute Care Surgery within the Department of Surgery at MCW. The program is directed by the Trauma Medical Director who is a member of the Division of Trauma, Critical Care, and Acute Care Surgery. The Trauma Medical Director uses an administrative committee to help direct the Trauma Program. This committee consists of representatives from all hospital services that care for an injured patient. The trauma service consults on all injured patients seen at Froedtert. All patients are met on arrival by the trauma team, which is composed of three trainees and one faculty member. Members of this team are in the hospital at all times. This plan ensures that any injured patient requiring immediate surgical treatment will have access to the highest level of professional care we can offer. Patients are screened for major injuries, and if more than one organ system is injured, the patients are admitted to the trauma service. If a single system is injured, then the appropriate specialty surgical service assumes the care of the patient. Our educational program includes weekly trauma-case conferences, multidisciplinary conferences six times a year, and various outreach conferences to hospitals and public forums.
The surgical critical care service is responsible for patients admitted to the Surgical ICU at FH. The ICU service provides a consulting service and functions as an extension of the primary team in the delivery of ICU care. The primary team retains responsibility for the patient. Once admission orders are written, the SICU service assumes the role of a primary care provider. Close communication between the SICU and primary service makes this arrangement convenient for all surgeons and helpful to overall patient care. This type of service has been shown to improve patient outcomes and lessen the duration of ICU care.
The SICU service is composed of three residents, a critical care fellow and a faculty member who has added qualifications in critical care. Multidisciplinary rounds are made daily with input from the entire team. A member of the team is present in the SICU providing 24-hour coverage of all patients.
The faculty also cover critically ill patients at the Zablocki VA Medical Center. We staff the SICU with our fellow, one surgical resident and one anesthesia resident. We provide coverage for general, vascular and cardiovascular patients.
The Critical Care educational program includes two lectures, a case conference, and a journal club every month. The case conference is multidisciplinary and involves a discussion by all care providers as to the best options for the management of a current patient in the SICU.