Lehigh Valley Hospital-Hazleton Accredited Level IV Trauma Center

Level IV Trauma Center Accreditation status has been granted to Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Hazleton by the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation (PTSF) effective Nov. 1, 2015.

The PTSF is a non-profit corporation recognized by the Emergency Medical Services Act (Act 1985-45). The PTSF is the organization responsible for accrediting trauma centers in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

As a Level IV trauma center, LVH–Hazleton has the resources immediately available to provide optimal care and reduce the likelihood of death or disability to injured patients. Accredited trauma centers must be continuously prepared to treat the most serious life-threatening and disabling injuries.

Alexandra Malenka, RN, BSN, trauma program coordinator said, “This exciting accomplishment is proof that our team at LVH–Hazleton is dedicated to providing optimal care to our trauma population. This is a much needed service for Hazleton and the surrounding communities and we are proud to be a part of it.”

The emergency medical services (EMS) system is an integral component to a trauma center. The EMS system assures appropriate patient care management from the time of injury to treatment at a local trauma center through the rehabilitative phase care.

“The Level IV Trauma Center designation is a testament to our team’s dedication to provide patients with the highest quality of care and expertise right here in our community,” said John Fletcher, president, LVH–Hazleton. “Our team consists not only of the dedicated emergency and other health care professionals at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Hazleton, but also pre-hospital first responders, the Lehigh Valley Health Network MedEvac medical flight team and the resources of our partners at the Level I Trauma Center at Lehigh Valley Hospital–Cedar Crest. Working together, we are providing the best and most efficient care to trauma patients in the Greater Hazleton area. “

In Pennsylvania there are four levels of trauma centers. Level I trauma centers provide the highest degree of resources with a full spectrum of specialists and must have trauma research and surgical residency programs. Level II trauma centers meet the same high level of care but do not require research and residency programs and the following subspecialists: cardiac surgery, hand surgery, vascular re-implantation, oral/maxillofacial surgery, otorhinolaryngological surgery, neurology, physiatry and psychiatry. Level III trauma centers are smaller community hospitals that do not require neurosurgeons and focus on stabilizing severe trauma patients prior to transport to a higher level trauma center. They may admit patients with mild and moderate injuries. Level IV trauma centers provide enhanced care to injured patients within the emergency department and focus on stabilization and quick transfer to a higher level trauma center. They may admit mildly injured patients.

Each trauma center regardless of its level is an integral component of the emergency medical services (EMS) system. The EMS system assures appropriate patient care management from the time of injury to treatment at a local hospital or trauma center through the rehabilitative phase of care. As of November 1, 2015 there will 34 trauma centers in Pennsylvania.

Lehigh Valley Health Network includes five hospital campuses -three in Allentown including the region’s only facility dedicated to orthopedic surgery, one in Bethlehem and one in Hazleton, Pa.; 13 health centers caring for communities in five counties; numerous primary and specialty care physician practices throughout the region; pharmacy, imaging, home health services and lab services; and preferred provider services through Valley Preferred.