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Published: Apr 19, 2013

By Tampa General Hospital


April 19, 2013 (Tampa, FL) - Tampa General Hospital’s Level l trauma center for adults and children is the first and only program in the state of Florida to earn recognition from the American College of Surgeons (ACS) for the quality of its trauma care. This achievement, known as verification, recognizes Tampa General’s dedication to providing optimal care for both adults and children. Verified trauma centers must meet essential criteria that ensure top-notch trauma care capability and institutional performance, as established by the ACS. These criteria mean that the trauma center has demonstrated commitment not only to patient care, but also to education, research, and community outreach. This designation as a nationally-verified level I trauma center confirms that Tampa General has demonstrated a commitment to providing the highest quality patient care, placing Tampa General in a class with the other leading trauma centers in the United States. “ACS verification truly is the gold standard for trauma care in the United States,” said Jim Burkhart, president and CEO of Tampa General. “Our physicians and clinical staff treat thousands of trauma cases a year to achieve the skill levels required for this distinction. Medical research has proven repeatedly that when it comes to trauma, the higher the volume, the better the patient outcomes.” The verification followed an extensive review by the ACS Committee on Trauma, which was established to improve all phases of patient care in trauma centers and to prevent injuries before they occur. A review team from the ACS, consisting of nationally-recognized experts in trauma care, performed an in-depth, on-site assessment of every aspect of the trauma program at Tampa General. This included evaluation of community injury prevention programs sponsored by Tampa General, pre-hospital triage and transport capabilities, trauma care in the emergency department, operating rooms, and intensive care units, and rehabilitation programs to return injured patients to their full potential. “Verification is a very difficult and challenging process that reviews the entire spectrum of care from the moment trauma patients hit the emergency room through the rehabilitation process,” said Dr. David Ciesla, medical director of the TGH Trauma Program. “The fact we are the only trauma center in Florida to earn this distinction reflects the high quality of care provided by our physicians and surgeons and the hospital’s clinical staff.” “I am so proud of the people on our trauma team at Tampa General for this recognition of the care they provide, which goes beyond the very good care for which Tampa General is known - it is outstanding care,” said Dr. Mark Kayton, medical director, TGH Pediatric Trauma Program. Tampa General is a 1018-bed academic medical center on the west coast of Florida that serves as the region’s only center for Level l trauma care, comprehensive burn care and adult solid organ transplants. It is the primary teaching hospital for the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. TGH is also one of 20 comprehensive stroke centers in Florida and is a state-certified spinal cord and brain injury rehabilitation center. The American College of Surgeons is a scientific and educational association of surgeons that was founded in 1913 to raise the standards of surgical education and practice and to improve the care of the surgical patient. The College has more than 72,000 members and is the largest association of surgeons in the world. Longstanding achievements have placed the ACS in the forefront of American surgery and have made it an important advocate for all surgical patients.