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October 1989

Treating the Trauma Patient

Author Affiliations

Sacramento, Calif

Arch Surg. 1989;124(10):1122. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1989.01410100020003

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Great strides have been made in the treatment of trauma with the regional development of trauma care. There is no question that trauma systems that ensure the rapid transport of critically injured patients to trauma centers save lives. When patients with catastrophic injuries are delivered to hospitals incapable of caring for them, time and lives are lost due to inadequate care or delays caused by the need to transfer.

As trauma care is not adequately funded, one way of managing this problem would be to encourage all hospitals to develop programs and take a share of the trauma load. The trauma losses would be passed on to paying patients with other illnesses so as to divide the liability. This concept, the nearest case to the nearest hospital, is the nonsystem we have had in the past, and it is not conducive to good, organized trauma care as it does not

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