Emergency Medicine

Trauma Care at HUP

No other service, division, or department at Penn Medicine is as intimately and heavily involved in the care of trauma and injured patients as the Department of Emergency Medicine. Both independently and jointly with the Trauma Service, ED fellows, residents, nurses, and other healthcare providers annually care for roughly 13,000 injured and complex trauma patients within the physical space of the emergency department at HUP. There is a close working relationship between the Department of Emergency Medicine and the Department of Surgery’s Division of Trauma and Critical Care. Together we deliver the highest quality of care to the entries spectrum of patients from minor lacerations and sprains to major multi-system trauma. Our patient contacts can be divided into four basic categories:

  • Trauma Alerts: These are the most critically ill patients for whom ED manages all airways as an integral part of the Trauma Team. In FY-’12 EM faculty together with senior ED residents staffed 1284 Trauma Alerts.
  • Trauma Responses: ED provides initial screening and triage of all patients brought by ground EMS crews to the Trauma Bay. These patients are subsequently cared for by the Division of Trauma in our emergency department trauma bay. In FY-’12 there were 710 Trauma Responses.
  • Trauma Consults: ED performs the initial assessment, treatment and evaluation of patients within the general emergency department space to determine the need for subsequent consultation by the trauma service. In FY-’12 emergency medicine generated 216 trauma consults.
  • Injured patients: ED provides independent and comprehensive evaluation, treatment and disposition for injured (defined as ICD-9 Codes 800 – 959) patients in the HUP emergency department. In FY-’12 emergency medicine treated 11,332 injured patients in the HUP ED with both unifocal and multifocal injuries.

There is an active aeromedical program with 3 full time helicopters providing inter-facility transports of unstable patients as well as direct scene transport of critically ill trauma patients.

Trauma team standing in trauma bay