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Practice makes perfect, even for Valley trauma unit

PHOENIX — A one-of-a-kind healthcare training program is proving to be a success in the Valley’s newest level-one trauma center.

Abrazo Health Care’s trauma center staff at West Valley Hospital worked 24 hours a day for more than two weeks without seeing a single patient. Instead, they held more than 70 mock drills.

“We actually functioned like a regular trauma service and the care of a mock patient was just like the care of a regular patient,” said Dr. Christopher Salvino.

Arizona recently designated the hospital a Level I trauma center, but before launching their new services, Salvino said they wanted to work out a few glitches.

“We found close to 200 small things that we fixed and processes that we have improved on,” he explained. “I really think that patients, when they first hit the door here, will benefit dramatically.”

Salvino said the mock drill program prepared his medical team for high intensity life or death situations and will save patients’ lives. He hopes other hospitals will eventually adopt their mock drill program.