This story consists of several actual occurrences rolled into one fictional case that illustrates the unique set of challenges physicians and nurses face working in a trauma center. The workload can vary tremendously during one shift because the care providers do not know when and how many patients will arrive at any time. They often must act quickly with little information to save the patient's life.
Physicians and nurses who do not know each other and have not worked together previously are thrust together to perform procedures that require practiced coordination of efforts. These challenging activities to provide care to people in the most acute states of trauma occur in a physical environment that typically is crowded, cramped, and seemingly characterized by a controlled chaos. The optimal care of an injured victim at a trauma center depends on many components. Even with the best health care technology and highly trained physicians and nurses, medical errors can still occur, often provoked by conditions of systems factors in the context in which care is provided.
Was this article helpful?