The following is the criteria for transferring patients from hospitals with limited capabilities to trauma centers:
|Interhospital Transfer Criteria, ATLS Table 13.1*|
|CLINICAL CIRCUMSTANCES THAT WARRANT INTERHOSPITAL TRANSPORT WHEN THE PATIENT’S NEEDS EXCEED AVAILABLE RESOUCES:|
|Category||Specific Injuries and Other Factors|
|Central Nervous System||
|Secondary Deterioration (Late Sequelae)||
You don’t need imaging tests such as CT scans if you know you are going to transfer the patient regardless of the results and when the results will not change management at the local hospital. Patients who need transfer for comprehensive care need it as quickly as possible. If in doubt about a whether a study is needed at the local hospital, it would be reasonable to ask the trauma center surgeon who will be accepting the patient.
AND MOST IMPORTANT:
“Stable patients with blunt abdominal trauma and documented liver or spleen injury may be candidates for nonoperative management. Implicit in such practice is the immediate availability of an operating room and a qualified surgical team. A general or trauma surgeon should supervise nonoperative management, regardless of the patient’s age. Such patients should not be treated expectantly at facilities that are not prepared for operative intervention; they should be transferred to a trauma center.”*
*Advanced Trauma Life Support Student Course Manual, 9th ed, c. 2013, American College of Surgeons,Chapter 13: Determining the need for patient transfer. pp. 300 and 301.