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New center unites Trauma, Burn, Emergency Surgery

Apr. 9, 2015, 8:57 AM

The Clinical Services of Trauma, Orthopaedic Trauma, Burn and Emergency General Surgery are formally joining forces to form The Vanderbilt Center for Trauma, Burn and Emergency Surgery. Vanderbilt University Medical Center operates the only certified Level 1 trauma facility in Middle Tennessee.

The mission of the center, which is organized within the Surgery Patient Care Center, is to align resources internally and increase community outreach, all in order to further advance Vanderbilt’s ability to meet these particular acute care needs and further strengthen this unique set of services for patients across the region.

“The depth and quality of services provided by these programs that are unique to Vanderbilt and Middle Tennessee is unparalleled, saving the lives of thousands of critically injured Tennesseans each year. Through the creation of this formal center, we are adding greater coordination that will further enhance our ability to serve this patient population for 65,000 square miles around us,” said C. Wright Pinson, MBA, M.D., deputy vice chancellor for Health Affairs and CEO of the Vanderbilt Health System.

“The center is in the process of developing a multidisciplinary approach to outpatient clinic care in order to consolidate appointments needed following hospitalization from a traumatic injury. Under this model outpatient visits would be designed, bringing all the specialties that touch a patient to one place,” said David Posch, chief executive officer of Vanderbilt University Hospital and clinics and executive director of Vanderbilt Medical Group.

Alex Jahangir, M.D., MMHC, associate professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation, will lead the new center as medical director and will work alongside other leaders to advance the center’s mission.

“We have assembled a professional medical team of partners who are all dedicated to continual improvement of our great acute care surgical services that we provide here at Vanderbilt. By having extensive communication and coordination across the different specialties, we will be able to provide even more efficient and valuable care across the entire continuum from the time of injury to the time the patient has recovered and returned back to his or her normal life.

“About 70 percent of patients admitted to the Trauma Service also have orthopaedic trauma, so our vision is a one-stop shop, which would enable a patient to make fewer visits rather than have several different appointments for follow-up care,” Jahangir said.

The center will also increase the already active community outreach done within these individual specialty areas. Trauma and Burn skills will be taught at rural emergency rooms and to Emergency Medical Services (EMS) agencies in order to elevate the overall level of trauma care given throughout the state and ultimately improve outcomes of the region’s trauma patients.

Medical leadership of the center includes Richard Miller, M.D., professor of Surgery and chief of the Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care; William Obremskey, M.D., MPH, MMHC, professor of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation and chief of the Division of Orthopaedic Trauma; Oscar Guillamondegui, M.D., associate professor of Surgery and medical director of the Trauma Intensive Care Unit; Blair Summitt, M.D., assistant professor of Plastic Surgery and medical director of the Vanderbilt Burn Center; Addison May, M.D., professor of Surgery and director of Surgical Critical Care; April Kapu, DNP, R.N., ACNP-BC, associate Nursing Officer, Advanced Practice; Oliver Gunter, M.D.; assistant professor of Surgery and director of Emergency General Surgery; Hassan Mir, M.D., MBA, associate professor of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation; and Tim Nunez, M.D., associate professor of Surgery and Trauma Performance Improvement director.

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