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Dr. Christopher Salvino, West Valley Hospital’s Trauma Medical Director, (far right) watches during one of the mock drills leading up to the opening of West Valley Hospital’s Level 1 Trauma Center that opened on July 21. Photo by Abrazo Health.

New Level 1 Trauma Center opens in West Valley

Abrazo Health, the second largest health care delivery system in Arizona, announced that West Valley Hospital has earned a state designation as a Level 1 Trauma Center, which is the highest status attainable. As a result, the Level 1 Trauma Center at West Valley Hospital is officially open to the public.

The Level 1 Trauma Center at West Valley hospital offers 24-hour emergency care and advanced treatment options for a variety of traumatic injuries. Located in Goodyear, it is the first Level 1 Trauma Center in the West Valley and will serve Arizona communities up to the California state line. The trauma center expects to serve approximately 1,200 patients annually.

The state designation comes after extensive preparation, including a $26 million expansion project that added two trauma operating suites, two trauma resuscitation bays and 32 new private patient rooms. In addition to experienced trauma staff and board-certified physicians, there are more than 50 surgical specialists added to the staff practicing in areas including orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, plastic surgery, facial surgery, hand surgery, cardiovascular surgery, ophthalmology, and general surgery.

“West Valley Hospital is the first Level 1 Trauma Center in Arizona and possibly the first in the United States to implement intense training drills as part of its preparation,” said Dr. Christopher Salvino, West Valley Hospital’s Trauma Medical Director, who spearheaded the mock drills.

Prior to opening, more than 70 mock drills were executed 24 hours a day for 17 continuous days to ensure a streamlined approach to trauma care by all hospital employees and several EMS providers. The drills included high-pressure situations such as car accidents, serious falls, gunshot victims and stabbing victims, Salvino added.

West Valley Hospital’s Level 1 Trauma Center is positioned to improve overall outcomes for critically-injured patients and their families.

“Our multidisciplinary trauma team is trained to provide around-the-clock expert medical care to these patients in complex emergency situations,” Salvino added.

The successes of the trauma drills will anchor West Valley Hospital’s Level 1 Trauma Center for a successful future, said Stan Holm, West Valley Hospital’s Chief Executive Officer.

“The synergies seen by our highly talented team members coming together was very rewarding to observe. Mock patients were moved from trauma bays to imaging to operating suites to intensive care to a post-surgical unit and other areas as the scenarios dictated. All of our team has done an outstanding job preparing us for this pinnacle moment in the history of West Valley Hospital,’’ he added.

“Launching such an endeavor required great planning, passions and persistence. Being the West Valley’s first Level 1 Trauma Center is a rewarding opportunity for all of us as we now have the privilege to care for the seriously injured in all of the western region of Arizona,’’ Holm said.