Froedtert & MCW chief of trauma talks treatment of police & perpetrators

NOW: Froedtert & MCW chief of trauma talks treatment of police & perpetrators

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Marc de Moya, MD, is the chief of trauma surgery at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin.

CBS 58 got the opportunity to speak with him about the recent uptick in gun violence and treating these cases in their trauma unit. Froedtert is the only level one trauma center in Southeast Wisconsin. There are only two in the state, the other is in Madison. 

It's been a busy month at Froedtert Hospital. Three local law enforcement officers were shot and released from treatment there in the last three weeks, something Dr. Marc de Moya saw firsthand. 

"I was involved with one of those police officers when they came into the trauma bay and was able to support him and his brothers and sisters in blue, because everyone is concerned, not just their own family, but coworkers too." 

Concern the trauma team has to be ready for at a moment's notice. 

"Sometimes we have perpetrators coming in and sometimes we have police officers coming in. Sometimes we have both. Whether it's a police officer or not a police officer, we provide that high level of care to everybody who comes through our doors. Sometimes we know it's a police officer ahead of time, sometimes we don't. We don't always get a whole lot of information ahead of time and so regardless of what we learn about it before...we actually all arrive when the patient comes, we are ready to go." 

That's when the team takes action. 

"I don't think people realize just how many team members it takes to get a patient from the ER back home. That team includes trained emergency medicine physicians, residents, trainees, as well as nurses specialized in trauma care, respiratory therapists, pharmacists, even clergy. They are all available at the bedside. The medical team, nurses and doctors then really kind of attack the patient like a pit team in a car race. That's exactly how we operate, actually. Everybody has their role because time is life." 

Doctors then decide if the patient has to go see any specialists for care. Dr. Marc de Moya says they treat at least one gunshot victim a day. 

"When you take a look at our volume, about 20% of it is accounted for by penetrating trauma, which is knife wounds, stabbings and gunshot wounds. It's a pretty significant amount of volume considering we admit to the hospital about 3,500 traumas a year. If you come into our hospital as a trauma patient, even as a severely injured patient, you have a 97% chance that you're going to be okay." 

Dr. Marc de Moya says his team is consistently working in the community to engage and advocate for preventing violence. He says the best part of his job is seeing someone walk out of the hospital.

"There's nothing better than seeing the patient go home, but not only going home. We want them to be in the best physical, mental and emotional state and that takes a lot of work. The needs of the patient are what dictate whether or not they can be discharged safely." 

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