Trauma Education

Integration of EM residents and surgical residents is the key to synergistic trauma training.

OUDEM's colleagues in Trauma Surgery strongly believe that injured patients' care is optimized with close collaboration between EM and Surgery.  There are thus many joint efforts between OUDEM and the Trauma Service at Tulsa's only American College of Surgeons (ACS)-accredited Trauma Center, St. John Medical Center (SJMC). Education, research, protocols development, and of course clinical care comprise major areas in which OUDEM and the SJMC Trauma Service work together.  SJMC encounters the full spectrum of blunt and penetrating injuries (residents receive additional training while rotating on the Burn Surgery Service at the area's only accredited Burn Center, Hillcrest Medical Center).  SJMC sees patients from Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma, and also serves as a major regional referral center for five contiguous states (AK, TX, KS, MO, LA).

SJMC's Trauma Surgery rotation provides the rotating EM resident with exposure to high-acuity trauma from resuscitation through the surgical and critical care phases.  EM residents have the opportunity to learn, practice, and become facile at performance of procedural and surgical skills, ranging from percutaneous tracheostomy to tube thoracostomy and wound exploration.  The EM residents are able to hone ED skills (such as ultrasound and line placement) in both the trauma resuscitation suite and also in post-resuscitation settings.  By participating in the initial trauma resuscitation and continuing to manage injured patients in the OR and ICU, the EM residents gain an excellent understanding of the natural history of trauma and the importance of optimizing multi-step care that begins in the prehospital arena and extends through rehabilitation.

Trauma and EM communicate and collaborate extensively during resuscitations, which involve residents from both EM and Surgery.  EM and Surgery residents work closely on the Trauma Service, with equal sharing of responsibilities and duties (and procedures); the interpersonal relationships forged from close work with the Trauma Service and the Surgery residents, contribute to the superb working atmosphere between OUDEM and Surgery.  EM and Surgery share trauma didactics, jointly participating in quarterly Trauma Grand Rounds and working together to present annual programs featuring nationally prominent trauma specialists.

As of 2011, residents have the capability to rotate at MIEMSS Shock/Trauma in Baltimore, to augment their training in the evaluation and care of the critically injured patient.