August 24, 2020
In early January 2020, North Suburban Medical Center was formally designated a Level II Trauma Center by the Colorado Department of Public Health, allowing NSMC to provide a higher level of care to victims of trauma in the region.
How did North Suburban receive its Level II Trauma Center designation?
North Suburban was a Level III Trauma Center for several years. In 2018, Dr. Jeffrey Levine was asked by the hospital’s CEO, Daphne David, to come lead the effort to upgrade the hospital to a Level II.
To receive its Level II Trauma center status, NSMC upgraded its orthopedic and neurosurgical coverage; expanded staff to include a new Trauma Program Director, a new ED Nurse Administrator; expanded its ICU by 12 beds; and added a 128-Slice CT scanner. In 2019, North Suburban also welcomed Dr. Darryl Auston, an orthopedic traumatologist to the team. Currently, Auston is the only fellowship-trained orthopedic traumatologist in Adams County, Colorado.
“The upgrade in our trauma capabilities, also positively impacts the quality of the care throughout the hospital,” said Kara Bernard, Director of Trauma Services. “Now there are more specialists, more staff and advanced technology, which means a higher level of care throughout the entire hospital.”
Why is this designation for North Suburban important for the Denver-area?
North Suburban Medical Center is located in Adams County, a thriving county in Colorado. The immediate area around NSMC has over 400,000 residents with over 175,000 people traveling by NSMC each day on the interstate. Before the Level II Trauma Center designation was obtained by NSMC, the closest Level II Trauma Center was sometimes more than thirty minutes away. In short, the community was underserved for trauma services.
“This is very good for patients and the community. Care for serious trauma can be received much quicker which is vitally important,” said Dr. Jeffrey Levine, Trauma Medical Director. “A lengthy travel to central Denver for complex trauma cases is no longer necessary.”
North Suburban now treats trauma patients closer to home, which is better for the community and for the families affected by trauma, and also incredibly important to local EMS partners. Previously, a trauma transport to a Level II Trauma Center would take up to an hour or more round trip, causing that ambulance and the EMS team to not be available for other calls. So, having a trauma center close by benefits the community greatly.