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Which Philadelphia Hospitals are Pediatric Trauma Centers?

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Edith Pearce is the Philadelphia children’s injury attorney, and as such, parents often inform her about their experiences at the local hospitals where their children were treated. Thankfully, Philadelphia is home to many wonderful hospitals, and two of them are Level I Pediatric Trauma Centers which treat children with traumatic injuries.

What is a traumatic injury?

A traumatic injury is a serious or critical bodily injury which requires immediate medical attention in order to save someone’s life or limb. Traumatic injuries are the leading cause of death to children aged 1 – 18. Children most often suffer these injuries from bicycle accident, falls and motor vehicle accidents.

Philadelphia has some outstanding hospitals for children with traumatic injuries. In fact, we have 2 nearby hospitals with official pediatric trauma center designations.

What is a pediatric trauma center?

The Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation (PTSF) is the organization responsible for accrediting trauma centers in Philadelphia. While many hospitals in Philadelphia have excellent emergency departments, accredited pediatric trauma centers meet certain requirements. Those requirements include having specially trained medical professionals available 24 hours a day. According to PTSF, those medical providers may include trauma surgeons, neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, cardiac surgeons, radiologists and nurses. Additionally, many accredited trauma centers also have specialty resources available such as a resuscitation area, operating rooms, in house lab testing, diagnostic testing, blood banks and a pharmacy.

Philadelphia’s Pediatric Trauma Centers

These hospitals are both teaching hospitals and have amazing programs well beyond the scope of this article.

St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children
Level I Pediatric Trauma Center
St. Christopher’s has 220 pediatric experts on staff and has the only dedicated pediatric burn facility in Philadelphia. St. Christopher’s received their Level I Pediatric Trauma Center designation in 2003. Located in North Philadelphia, the hospital has been a leader in pediatric care since 1875 and serves patients from all over Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)
Level I Pediatric Trauma Center
Established in 1855, CHOP is “the birthplace of pediatric medicine in America”. CHOP was Pennsylvania’s first Pediatric Trauma Center and was accredited in 1986. The U.S. News & World Report ranked CHOP No. 1 in more specialties than any other pediatric hospital in the USA. CHOP’s Pediatric ICU (PICU) provides intensive care for infants to adolescents.

CHOP provides this great video explaining how they treat injured children. According to the video, CHOP treats around 1,300 children with traumatic injuries each year, and approximately 50% of those children were transferred to CHOP from other local hospitals or urgent care facilities:

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