Patient Resources

Welcome to our HUMC Division of Trauma & Critical Care patient information page.

Trauma Survivor Celebration

Each Spring, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center honors our trauma survivors, their families and the hospital staff who cared for them during their hospitalization and rehabilitation.  

The occasion commences with an afternoon luncheon and public ceremony celebrating the heroic stories of survival and recovery of our previous patients.  Each honoree and their family members are given the opportunity to reconnect with the healthcare team members who cared for them when they were injured.

Attendees include not only our guests of honor and clinicians, but also community leaders, hospital administrators and local business sponsors.  The day showcases the multidisciplinary approach and participation needed to provide high quality care for trauma patients.

Phases of Care:

Prehospital

“Los Angeles County has one of the largest Emergency Medical Systems (EMS) in the nation and, as one of the first to be developed, is known nationally and internationally as a leader in the field of prehospital care.  The system utilizes over 18,000 certified EMS personnel employed by fire departments, law enforcement, ambulance companies, hospitals and private organizations to provide lifesaving care to those in need 24 hours a day, seven days a week.” (L.A. County EMS Agency).  Much of EMS care is trauma-related and involves contact with Harbor-UCLA as a base hospital.

Emergency Department

Over 3,500 trauma patients are evaluated in Harbor-UCLA’s Emergency Department annually.  Patients are initially assessed and managed by a Trauma Team composed of trauma surgeons, general surgery residents, emergency medicine physicians, emergency medicine residents and nursing staff.  Activation of the trauma team is dependent on the acuity of the patient.  Upon completion of a patient’s clinical assessment and initial management, a final disposition for the patient is determined based on stability and need for additional intervention(s).  Approximately 50-60% of our trauma patients require hospital admission, and 20% require Intensive Care Unit (ICU) level of care.

In-Patient Care 

As an American College of Surgeons verified Level I Trauma Center, Harbor-UCLA provides comprehensive medical care to all trauma patients, regardless of mechanism of injury. Our multidisciplinary team is comprised of specially trained physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, social workers, nutritionists, laboratory and radiology technicians, physical and occupational therapists, as well as ancillary staff who care for patients with complex injuries.

We offer operative and interventional capabilities 24 hour per day, 7 day per week in both hybrid and traditional settings.  Our Surgical Intensive Care Unit is capable of caring for up to 20 high acuity trauma patients who are managed by a dedicated ICU team.  As patients clinically improve, they are downgraded and admitted to one of three Trauma teams.  Patients are then further evaluated by a number of critical ancillary services including speech and language pathology, occupational and physical therapy as well as social work in anticipation of transition to the next phase of care.

Rehabilitation

As a member of the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, Harbor-UCLA is fortunate to be affiliated with the nationally recognized Rancho Los Amigos (RLA) Rehabilitation Center.  “For more than 125 years clinicians at RLA have been on a mission to restore health, rebuild life, and revitalize hope for persons with a life-changing illness, injury or disability.  They care for approximately 4,000 inpatients each year and service 71,000 outpatient visits annually”.  Harbor-UCLA Trauma patients who are deemed to require further outpatient or inpatient therapy are routinely transferred or referred to RLA for ongoing care.

Trauma Clinic:

Immediately upon discharge from our inpatient services, trauma and acute care surgery patients are given follow up appointments to meet with healthcare providers in our outpatient clinic. Our Trauma Clinic is staffed by an attending Trauma Surgeon, General Surgery Residents, Trauma Nurse practitioners and Nurses. We see approximately 70 Acute Care Surgery and Trauma Surgery patients weekly.  The outpatient setting gives us an opportunity to follow up on our patient’s overall quality of health since hospital discharge. Clinic visits consist primarily of post-operative wound checks, review of pathology results, and evaluation of any new or persistent symptoms. Provided they are medically cleared, patients are subsequently discharged from trauma clinic and their care is transferred to primary care providers with referrals made to subspecialists as needed. 

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