LRMC pioneers largest trauma system

1st Lt. Chrystal Smith
Kaiserslautern American

Landstuhl Regional Medical Center physicians and administrators have
taken military medical care to a level that is saving more lives and
limbs, and improving health care throughout this whole region.

According to Maj. Stephen Fecura, LRMC administrative director, the
initiative to standup a trauma system quality forum for LRMC began more
than a year ago, and came fully online in September.

The trauma forum is a monthly video teleconference where physicians,
medical administrators and experts of the aeromedical evacuation field
and Veteran’s Affairs officials across 12 time zones, sync-up real-time
to discuss patient care issues for the sake of providing thorough and
efficient care to patients.

In only two months there have been immense changes in the LRMC system,
said Maj. Fecura. The forums have already improved the quality of
healthcare provided to patients transported out of the combat zones to
LRMC and on to medical facilities in the United States and throughout

The goal of the system, according to LRMC trauma program medical
director Dr. (Lt. Col.) Warren Dorlac, is to decrease mortality and
morbidity while positively affecting the care of patients, particularly
trauma patients, throughout the region.

“The communication, feedback and networking established – clinical and
non-clinical – have saved lives and millions of dollars because we’re
improving the system in place,” said Maj. Fecura.

The trauma program mirrors Willford Hall Medical Center at Lackland Air
Force Base, Texas, in terms of process and improvement, while the
quality forum was inspired by U.S. civilian healthcare professionals.

There is a wide array of benefits now that the program is online. 
It is a forum to discuss different patient issues.  It gives a
place to follow up, which in turn improves the future care of patients
around the globe.  

The forum bridges communication gaps between trauma patients associated
with the transfer of patient care and pain management, said Maj. Fecura.
LRMC physicians and administrators take a personal pride in the
improved quality of care given to trauma patients and give praise to
the trauma quality forum, said Maj. Fecura.

The cross flow of information is doing wonders in improving the quality of care provided.

“The visibility to communicate findings on the spot effects change in
the immediacy,” Major Fecura said. “Working issues in workgroup setting
improve patient outcomes.”

Because LRMC is responsible for the care of patients transported in and
through the European theater, the staff sees numerous victims of trauma
as a result of combat, in addition to day-to-day operations. 
Seeing the increased need for quality care, Doctor Dorlac teamed with
Major Fecura and sold the idea to a host of physicians and medical
administrators throughout the region, and toVeteran’s Hospital
physicians and administrators back home in the United States.

With the blessings of local administration, Doctor Dorlac and Major
Fecura, along with other physicians and administrators, began to change
the face of medicine that impacts past, present and future Soldiers,
Sailors, Airmen and Marines.