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April 5 – 18, 2014


Community Commentary

New trauma center is necessary Turning ideas into action with innovation BY TIM BRICKER, PRESIDENT AND CEO CHANDLER REGIONAL AND MERCY GILBERT MEDICAL CENTERS

A historic event recently occurred in the East Valley. On March 24, Chandler Regional Medical Tim Bricker. Center opened Submitted photo its Level I Trauma Center and began to receive patients suffering the most severe injuries. In a situation where minutes literally can mean life or death, the new trauma center and its Chandler location is a necessity. In 2012 only 42 percent of patients who were critically injured in Maricopa County arrived at a Level I Trauma Center within the “golden hour.” That statistic is even more alarming in Pinal County as the percentage drops to 10 percent. This “golden” timeframe immediately following the injury is the critical hour within which a patient’s chances of survival are the greatest at a Level I Trauma Center. And 58 percent of all trauma patients in Maricopa County did not have that opportunity! There are 1.2 million residents in Southeast Valley communities who live outside the range of arriving within that golden hour, and risk the extra time it takes to be transported to a hospital in Central Phoenix. The Chandler Fire Department estimates that bringing patients to Chandler Regional Medical Center will save between seven and 18 minutes. Patients from Ahwatukee to San Tan Valley, Maricopa to Miami, and even parts of Mesa and Tempe, will be better

served because of their proximity to the new Chandler Regional Medical Center Level 1 Trauma Center. Patients suffering the most critical injuries, such as gunshot wounds, crush or fall injuries, motor vehicle or bicycle accidents, will be evaluated by first responders and taken to the nearest Level I Trauma Center. Chandler Regional is designated as a provisional Level I Trauma Center by the Arizona Department of Health Services, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Trauma System and it currently meets the criteria needed to also be a Level I Trauma Center from the American College of Surgeons. The American College of Surgeons will assess and verify the facility after 18 months of provisional status and 12 months of trauma patient data. Both designations indicate we operate 24-hour coverage by highly specialized critical care surgeons, we equip our emergency room to perform surgery on the most traumatic of injuries, and we have the capacity to care for these patients during recovery. The American College of Surgeons requires residency and research programs to be designated as Level I, and we’re excited to announce that we will have a surgical residency program with William Beaumont Army Medical Center beginning June. Chandler Regional has a long history of anticipating and meeting the healthcare needs of our neighbors. Our current expansion will add 96 beds and open this fall. We will increase our capacity to care for all patients who come through our doors—trauma and otherwise. With our new designation as a Level I Trauma Center, we look forward to serving our Southeast Valley residents, knowing that in the critical moment that they or a loved one needs the highest level of medical attention, we are close by and prepared.

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Flashing lights, buzzing slot machines and 24-hour service, the energy costs are inevitable. Combine that with lodging, pools and restaurants and it’s no surprise casinos are searching for innovations to help cut costs and improve their bottom line. “Conservation is a top priority at Harrah’s Ak-Chin and an important part of our culture,” says Robert Livingston, vice president/general manager at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino. The casino, located on the Ak-Chin Indian Community, adjacent to the City of Maricopa has been involved in green efforts for many years, in particular with the start of our HERO program, an employee volunteer group. Since then, we have adopted several other environmental programs and initiatives in and around the casino. “In addition to making a positive impact on the environment and helping us cut business costs, our customers have told us they appreciate the casino’s efforts to recycle and reuse as much as possible,” Livingston says. And it’s paid off. The casino’s employee volunteer program, HERO, and CodeGreen, parent company Caesars’ environmental sustainability initiative that focuses on renewable energy, reduction of carbon emissions and water consumption, have allowed us to make a commitment to the environment and sustainability, and create a green culture. Visitors to our casino can actually “see” the green efforts first hand. We have saved money by replacing light bulbs in various locations throughout the casino with new LED lighting and conserving energy through temperature control. “Conservation in its many forms is here to stay,” says Livingston. “The green revolution has casinos and resorts

everywhere adopting green changes and Harrah’s continues to be one of them.” To further save costs, casino slot machines have been analyzed to ensure the circuits aren’t overloaded during use, the way the kitchen receives hot water to conserve electricity has been changed, the propane heater has been replaced with an electric heater that includes a timer and a metering device has been installed to control water use on the buffet dishwasher. “These initiatives have conserved nearly 75,000 kilowatts of electricity per year for a savings of approximately $46,000 and 658,000 gallons of water per year for a savings of almost $12,000,” Livingston says. Other programs and initiatives helping us with our carbon footprint include: • Eco-awareness events in and around Maricopa where both employees and guests have a chance to engage. • Green casino activities and demonstrations on how to use new technology. • The addition of thermostat technology automatically resets the thermostat to a set temperature to conserve energy once guests leave their hotel room. • The casino emphasizes recycling, offering front-of-house recycling for guests, with four bins on the casino floor and two large wall displays to show various Harrah’s Ak-Chin recycle facts and energy tips. “In the past year alone, our conservation efforts helped Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino save close to $60,000,” Livingston says. “In 2014, we hope to continue to save and educate both our employees and the community on the benefits of more sustainable practices.” Mike Kintner is a Chandler resident and the marketing director at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino.

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April 5 – 18, 2014


4 5 2014stsn p47 48 opinion  
4 5 2014stsn p47 48 opinion