The Trauma Section, created on October 4, 2009, owes its existence to the passage of Act 393
, otherwise known as the Trauma System Act, during the 2009 legislative session. Governor Mike Beebe signed the bill into law on March 13, 2009, and funding commenced on July 1, 2009. The Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) is the agency charged with the responsibility of implementing the Trauma System.
The Trauma System Act and associated funding legislation provided for 18 positions within ADH. Key leadership staff within the Branch includes Dr. Todd Maxson, who is the Trauma Medical Director at Arkansas Childrens’ Hospital and the Trauma Medical Consultant to ADH. In addition, Bill Temple came on-board with ADH on October 4, 2009, as the Branch Chief for Injury Prevention and Control, and Renee Patrick assumed the duties of Trauma Section Chief on May 3, 2010. Other positions have been filled as well and hiring will continue until completed.
In addition to the hiring initiative that is underway, the Section has a number of other tasks which must be completed in order to have a fully functioning Trauma System. Some of these include: ensuring that grant funds reach hospitals and emergency service (EMS) providers; creating policies and procedures regarding both internal operation of the Section as well as the operation of the Trauma System throughout the State; creating a communications system to be used by hospitals and EMS providers (a contract is in place with Motorola, Inc. for this purpose); providing for an Arkansas Trauma Call Center to complete the communications component; ensuring that education is provided to those individuals and entities that will play crucial roles in the Trauma System; working closely with the Trauma Advisory Council, which provides guidance and advice to the ADH regarding Trauma System implementation; and, conducting other liaison activities with a wide variety of individuals and groups having an interest in the new Trauma System.
Safe States Alliance
The Safe States Alliance conducted an assessment of the Arkansas Department of Health’s Injury Prevention Program on August 1, 2011 through August 5, 2011. Below is a report on their findings and recommendations for program improvement.