Why a Level 1 Trauma Center Matters

Karen McNew McGuire's picture
By Karen McNew McGuire on April 5, 2018

During emergencies, when patients need the most critical care possible, they’re automatically transported here…to the region’s only Level 1 Trauma Center, Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital.

The Level 1 Trauma Center is a commitment of the organization,” explained Thomas E. Shuler, M.D., of Carilion Clinic Orthopaedic Trauma and chief of Carilion’s Orthopaedic Trauma & Fracture Service.

“There are some injuries that are so bad that no one physician, no single group of physicians can care for them,” added Gary Simonds, M.D., chief of Carilion Clinic Neurosurgery. “You need a combination of multiple specialists.”

“We are prepared on a moment’s notice,” said Eric Marvin, D.O., a Carilion Clinic Neurosurgeon.

“We are also a referral center for all of the other hospitals in the area that have trauma that is maybe at a level above what they are prepared to take care of,” said Jesse B. Seamon, M.D., of Carilion Clinic Orthopaedic Trauma.

Covering a population base of 1.5 million people,  Carilion Clinic is committed to providing the highest level of emergency care.

National statistics reflect a 20 percent reduction in deaths for severely injured patients cared for at a Level I Trauma Center compared with those receiving treatment outside a trauma center.

By delivering highly specialized care right away, Level I Trauma Centers save lives and optimize a patient’s recovery. 

“As a Level 1 Trauma Center we offer very high level services, neurosurgery general surgery and also our high level ortho trauma services 24/7,” said Dr. Shuler.

The Institute for Orthopaedics and Neurosciences at Carilion Clinic supports the Level 1 Trauma Center accreditation with high level specialist care and creates a coordinated opportunity to support patients at all stages of healing and recovery.   

“The collaboration between the trauma service and ortho service really provides us with being able to provide optimal care in a timely and very effective manner for our patients,” said Dr. Marvin. 

But aside from providing comprehensive trauma care, what also sets Level I Centers apart from Level II and III Centers is the number of patients cared for daily, a commitment to robust research, quality improvement and a number of residencies where future physicians are in training. 

For more than 30 years Carilion Clinic has been the only Level 1 Trauma Center in the region because our team is committed to being here when you need us.