Mildura Base Hospital
Part of Ramsay Health Care


Trauma Team Training a first at MBH

Jul 11, 2019

Senior doctors and nurses from Mildura Base Hospital have become the first in regional Victoria to receive advanced team training under a new program delivered by the State’s leading trauma specialists.

The project is led by surgeons from Australia’s biggest trauma centre, the Alfred Hospital, and aims to ensure the outcomes for road trauma victims in the critical first hours following an accident are as good as possible.

MBH Director of Medical Services Dr Kate McConnon said the training involved the hospital’s specialist doctors and nurses who provide emergency care of road trauma patients.

“This is a terrific extended training opportunity for the emergency physicians, surgeons, anaesthetists and emergency and theatre nurses who receive and need to resuscitate trauma patients,” Dr McConnon said.

“Those first hours after an accident are often the most critical in determining the immediate and long-term outcomes for a patient, and because of our distance from Melbourne, the pressure on our teams here is quite unique and high-level,” she said.

“We know that the medical and nursing staff at Mildura Base Hospital are already trained and experienced. This additional training focuses strongly on communication in the emergency team and is a valuable opportunity refine the skills that can make a life-saving difference to patients in critical situations.”

The training was headed by leading trauma specialist, Professor Mark Fitzgerald, Director of the National Trauma Research Institute, also Director of Trauma Services at The Alfred Hospital.

Their training has been delivered in more than a dozen overseas sites, and is now being provided to teams at Victorian hospitals through funding from the Transport Accident Commission.

“Mildura is an ideal place to begin because, with Mildura’s remoteness, there is no opportunity to bypass trauma patients to specialist hospitals – it’s a minimum six-hour turnaround to transfer a patient from here to a major trauma centre,” he said.

“The clinical staff here are very good. Even ahead of this project, they’d approached us independently for some training because technology is moving very rapidly and they recognised that keeping clinical skills and techniques up to date is critical.”

But Dr Fitzgerald said the training focussed not only on technical skills, but also on the teamwork required to provide effective trauma care.

“We train doctors and nurses together because it’s not just about the technical skills,” he said.

“It’s like a pit crew – providing good care and saving lives is about building teams that understand their roles and have confidence not only in themselves but in each other.

“It was an excellent opportunity to provide the training and hopefully to provide it in an ongoing way, because with isolated communities like Mildura, Warrnambool, Sale and Albury Wodonga, these local teams are the critical providers.”

Trauma Team Training a first at MBH

L-R Alfred Hospital Trauma Fellow Dr Jun Ban, Alfred Trauma Nurse Specialist Emma Lin, MBH consultant anaesthetist Dr Sanaa Ismail, Professor Mark Fitzgerald and Emergency Registrar at MBH Dr Isaac Liu