Each year, the lives of hundreds of Alabamans depend on their ability to get access to critical care for traumatic injuries. Patients have the best chance for survival if definitive care is available within an hour after injury so that the patient can reach an operating room where stabilization can occur, internal bleeding can be stopped and blood volume can be restored. But these patients cannot be effectively treated unless there is a planned, organized (System) approach in order.
The total economic costs associated with trauma are greater than $400 billion dollars annually ($6.5 billion for Alabama), making trauma America’s most costly health issue. Complete implementation of the statewide trauma system will bring our costs down.
Voluntary trauma system started in seven counties around Birmingham in 1996; ten years later, the death rate from trauma in this area decreased by 12%. In rural Alabama, where trauma systems are non-existent, the death rate remained the same. In 2005, 28% of accidents in rural areas but accounted for 69% of deaths, 72% of accidents in urban areas but only 31% of deaths. This means that the DEATH RATE IS TWICE AS HIGH (1.78% VS. 0.9%) IN RURAL AREAS.