COLUMBUS (WCMH) – A new trauma center was scheduled to open Wednesday morning on the east side of Columbus.
Mount Carmel East opened its new, verified trauma center at 8 a.m. The facility has three trauma bays and a color-coded ambulance bay, and doctors there say it means patients on the east side will be able to get the care they need more quickly.
Michael Wanat, a firefighter/paramedic with Jefferson Township, said that during rush hour, even with lights and sirens on, it can take up to 20 minutes to get someone who’s seriously hurt on the east side to a trauma center. That ambulance would have to pass by Mount Carmel East, until now.
“It would take us about ten minutes to get from anywhere in Jefferson Township to Mount Carmel East with a trauma,” Wanat said.
Those five to ten minutes, Wanat said, are critical.
Doctors, nurses and medics refer to the hour after a patient is traumatically injured as “the golden hour.”
“That’s when getting them in and providing them care within that initial hour following the injury is most important,” said Dr. Al Gora, the chairman of emergency medicine at Mount Carmel.
The new trauma center consists of three bays, each one equipped to take care of a trauma patient. One is also stocked to take care of pregnant patients who are traumatically injured.
Outside, a color-coded ambulance bay has a direct entrance for medics to bring trauma patients where they need to go.
Physicians say they expect 1,500 to 1,800 patients a year will now receive care at Mount Carmel East for traumatic injuries, rather than heading to a hospital farther away.
A Mount Carmel spokesperson said this move has been in the works for the last three and a half years.