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UPMC Williamsport has taken a major step forward with the announcement that the state-run Trauma Systems Foundation has received accreditation for the Level II Trauma Center effective September 1st.

This creates a team of surgeons and specialists who care for patients with car accidents, gunshot and stab wounds, and other serious, life-threatening injuries.

“Trauma is any injury inflicted on the body from an external source.” said Dr. Ronen Elefant, Medical Director and Trauma Surgeon, Trauma Services, UPMC of North Central Pennsylvania.

With this type of injury, time is of the essence, and the sooner a patient is operated on, the better their chances of survival, Elefant said.

A Level II trauma center here will enable faster intensive care, improved emergency surgery outcomes and real-time coordination with Level I trauma experts on the UPMC network, said Steve Johnson, president of UPMC of North Central Pennsylvania.

The local center saves the need to transport a trauma patient who has run out of time to a distant center.

The importance of this fact cannot be underestimated, not only for Greater Williamsport and Lycoming Counties, but also for people suddenly critically injured right up to the border with New York and counties in the west with gaps in coverage like eastern Clinton County and Cameron and McKean Counties.

Nevertheless, we congratulate UPMC of North Central Pennsylvania and UPMC Williamsport on achieving this important milestone.

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With a helipad at Geisinger Jersey Shore Hospital, people have faster access to life-saving emergency medical services.

“Prior to the construction of the helipad, medical helicopter transports from the Jersey Shore area took place at Jersey Shore Airport in Antes Fort, almost three miles from the hospital.” said Marc Stempka, a Geisinger spokesman.

The fact that the hospital will be able to provide a more direct route to critical care could make all the difference for someone who needs it on time.

It’s worth noting that this $ 2 million project was funded in part with a $ 250,000 grant from the Williamsport Lycoming Community Fund to the First Community Foundation Partnership of Pennsylvania to help quiet life in our local communities to enhance.

Today we take our hats off to the foundation, which recognized this need, and to Geisinger Jersey Shore for its commitment to our region.

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