National Trauma Research Institute Director Professor Russell Gruen and Director of Trauma Services at The Alfred Associate Professor Mark Fitzgerald.
Trauma cases rise
Alfred Hospital data reveals that an average of three critically-ill patients required life saving intervention each day during 2008–09—more than ever before.
Nearly 1,200 major traumas came into the hospital during that period—as well as several thousand more minor traumas—with numbers elevated on weekends.
National Trauma Research Institute Director Professor Russell Gruen said common sense was one of the best ways to prevent death and permanent disability caused by injury.
‘It’s a sad fact that many of the people admitted to The Alfred Trauma ICU are there because someone has been careless with speeding, has driven, or been violent, under the influence of alcohol or other drugs or has done other things that unnecessarily put themselves and others at risk.
‘We provide excellent care for the injured but it’s heart-breaking to see people die or be permanently disabled by injuries from which they can’t ever fully recover,’ Professor Gruen said.
Alfred Trauma Services Director Associate Professor Mark Fitzgerald said the latest major trauma figures represented a 60 per cent increase in presentations since the Victorian State Trauma System was established in 2001.
‘The Victorian State Trauma System is delivering the results and outcomes promised,’ Associate Professor Fitzgerald said.
Data also revealed the major trauma patients remained overwhelmingly male and predominantly succumbed to death as a result of traumatic brain injury, almost always caused by a blunt mechanism as opposed to penetrating injury or burns.