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CHI St. Francis in Breckenridge, Minnesota is designated a level IV trauma center.

Catholic Health Initiatives St. Francis Health in Breckenridge, Minnesota, continues to be designated a level IV trauma hospital.

St. Francis participates in a voluntary annual designation process to become part of Minnesota’s statewide trauma system which is reviewed every three years. The process includes an outside review of the hospital’s resources and capabilities to care for trauma patients, a release stated.

“Achieving this status is important to the patients when every minute counts in a medical emergency,” CHI St. Francis President David Nelson said.

The “golden hour” between sustaining an injury and receiving care is the most important predictor of survival.

Trauma claims the lives of 2,400 Minnesota residents annually, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. However, states with a “mature, comprehensive statewide trauma system” have seen survival rates increase by 15 to 20 percent.

“The goal of a trauma system is to decrease injured patients’ time to care by making sure their medical needs are appropriately matched with hospital resources,” said Minnesota Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm. “With the designation of CHI St. Francis as a level IV trauma hospital, we are getting closer to our goal of ensuring that seriously injured Minnesotans have access to an organized system of trauma care where they are in the state.”

A statewide trauma system began development in August of 2005.

Amie Benedict, RN, Emergency Room lead manager at CHI St. Francis, explained that the designation ensures that they are ready to act in an emergency.

“We have everything we need to respond to insure an optimal outcome for the patient,” she said.

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