Trauma-related deaths can be prevented by timely action

Trauma-related deaths can be prevented by timely action

Need for more trauma centres across cities that are up-to-date and organized

New Delhi, October 17, 2017:In India, one person dies of a road accident every minute, indicate statistics. Road accidents account for about 1,50,000 deaths every year. Injuries and the resultant trauma rank fourth in the causes of death across all age groups children, adolescents, and young adults. These are also reasons for more premature deaths than cancer, heart disease or other such diseases.[1]On World Trauma Day, there is a need to raise awareness on the fact that majority of these trauma-related deaths can be prevented through timey action and medical care.

Many deaths occur either within minutes of the injury, at the scene of accident or injury, before the victim is taken to the medical facility, or immediately upon arrival at the hospital. Some of the reasons for death include massive hemorrhage or severe neurological injury.

Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, National President Indian Medical Association (IMA) and President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Dr RN Tandon – Honorary Secretary General IMA in a joint statement, said, “There is still a long way to go in terms of immediate trauma care in India. There are many issues in offering critical care to injury victims. India lacks significant pre-hospital care in most cities with the golden hour concept still an ambiguity for many. This is further exacerbated by poor ambulances services and the lack of a centralized agency to monitor them. Hospitals need to ensure availability of casualty medical officers who can do more than just resuscitation. Add to this the fact that there are no dedicated trauma surgeons in India, which often causes delays in clinical decision making.  This is because various aspects are handled by various departments and not a single entity. Last but not the least, there is no central trauma registry in any institute.”

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In a survey, it was found that the risk of deaths in injured people can be reduced by about 25% if a trauma victim is treated at a dedicated trauma centre.[2]Trauma centres are classified into four levels based on the available resources and the number of patients admitted.

Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, said, “There is a need to have dedicated trauma centres in cities throughout the country that can provide the best emergency services and have up-to-date trauma systems. This means that such a hospital should have high-quality intensive care ward and an operating theatre, learned and dedicated personnel, and updated and latest equipment. Apart from this, it is imperative to make efforts to prevent injury or reduce the severity of injuries, as this will help in preventing many cases of immediate death.”

Prevention is always better than cure. Trauma can be prevented by staying alert at an individual level.

Some do’s and don’ts to consider with regard to accidents and injuries are as follows.

  • Follow the road safety rules and be aware of warning signs and traffic signals.
  • Do not forget to wear a helmet and take a break if you are driving for a long distance.
  • Do not use the mobile phone while driving or listen to loud music.
  • Keep a first-aid kit ready at home and in your vehicle.
  • Do not drive if you are sleepy, tired, or have had drinks.
  • If you notice a person with head or spinal injury, move the person from the site only with professional help to avoid serious back or neck injuries.
  • Do not give fluids to any unconscious or semi-conscious traumatized person.
  • Learn basic life support techniques and help the injured.

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