The first and only hospital to receive Level 1 Designation in Riverside County

Riverside, CA – Riverside Community Hospital (RCH), part of the HCA Healthcare Far West Division, recently became the first and only hospital in Riverside County to receive Level 1 accreditation by Riverside County Ems Agency (REMSA). RCH is among the busiest emergency departments and is one of 10 Level 1 designated trauma centers in Southern California.

The level 1 accreditation is the highest level a hospital trauma center can receive. To receive a Level 1 designation from REMSA, a hospital must first meet all requirements to accept a higher acuity of trauma patients. This achievement signifies the hospital and its trauma teams have demonstrated commitment to providing the highest quality trauma care for injured patients.

“Achieving this accreditation is a great reflection of the hard work and life-saving care the team at Riverside Community Hospital does every day,” says Riverside Community Hospital President and CEO Jackie DeSouza–Van Blaricum. “This designation was made possible through a collaborative team of nurses, physicians, and ancillary support teams that care for some of the most complex patients. We have invested in the latest innovative technology as well as resources and developing a highly trained trauma team who are ready to care for any emergency. Our Graduate Medical Education clinical research has also strengthened our program and has positioned us to receive such prestigious recognition.”

Riverside Community Hospital’s Emergency Department (ED) cares for more than 124,000 patients and 4,000 trauma patients annually. It was also the first hospital in California to register with the “National Stop the Bleed Campaign” in January of 2017 and has trained over 6,243 individuals and over 93 community partners in the life-saving technique.

Last year, the hospital completed a $7.5 million ED expansion project increasing the ED capacity from 50 to 64 beds. Riverside Community Hospital treated close to 1,000 strokes alone and cared for more than 15,000 cardiac patients. Riverside Community Hospital is equipped to receive transfers from area hospitals and emergency rooms for patients in need of a higher level of emergent care.

David Plurad, M.D., Trauma Medical Director and trauma surgeon, explains the required standards to become a Level 1 Trauma Center. “To meet the standards of being a Level 1, RCH ensures 24/7 availability of all surgical and medical resources to ensure the best outcomes for the citizens of our community should they become seriously injured. This includes skilled trauma surgeons, emergency physicians, orthopedists, neurosurgeons, intensive care physicians and cardiac surgeons all supported by the latest equipment and highly trained nurses and staff. There is the immediate availability of a robust operating room with advanced imaging and cardiopulmonary bypass technology, interventional radiology capabilities, and critical care services that includes an advanced neurointensive care unit.”

Being a level I trauma center means RCH provides the most highly specialized surgeons and equipment available to take care of the most seriously injured. It also means that RCH is a center for trauma research and education so that the community can benefit from the latest advances. This level of service is not available at just any trauma center. RCH is Riverside county’s only Level I trauma center and only 1 of 2 in the Inland Empire. RCH Level I designation is a commitment to the community to provide care that is second to none.

As a Level I Trauma Center, RCH is also committed to resident education and research that will benefit trauma patients in Riverside County and beyond. The Level I Trauma Center designation establishes RCH as a center of excellence for trauma care, training, and research now and into the future.

Georgi Collins, MSN, RN Assistant Vice President, Far West Division HCA, states, “This new Level I Trauma Designation highlights the commitment of our Riverside team to consistently provide a superior level of care to our patients and demonstrates their ability to provide life-saving treatment when our patients need it most.”

“This is a momentous occasion for our institution and our community. I am extremely proud to work with such an exceptional trauma team here at RCH,” says Dina Elias, Trauma Program Director at Riverside Community Hospital. “RCH’s Level 1 designation could not have been accomplished without the hard work and support of the entire organization. As the county’s first Level 1 Trauma Center, our highly-trained trauma surgeons work around the clock, alongside other specialty physicians and nurses, in relentless pursuit of delivering prompt, high-quality care for patients with life–threatening injuries.”

About Riverside Community Hospital

Riverside Community Hospital has been serving the Southern California community for over 110 years with a staff of over 2,000 employees, 600 physicians, and over 200 specialties. Riverside Community Hospital has been recognized as a Top Performing Hospital on Key Quality Measures for three consecutive years in a row by The Joint Commission and is rated as a five-star orthopedic program by Healthgrades. In addition, the hospital recently received a Grade A rating for safety by Leapfrog.

Riverside Community Hospital houses one of the largest emergency departments and Level 1 Trauma Centers in southern California. Additionally, the hospital is the largest STEMI (heart attack) receiving center and a fully accredited Chest Pain Center. Specialty services include the HeartCare Institute, which offers invasive and non-invasive cardiac procedures, the Center of Excellence for Surgical Weight Loss, the Transplant Program, the Cancer Center, and a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Riverside Community Hospital is also committed to training the next generation of physicians through its Graduate Medical Education program.

RCH is part of the HCA Healthcare’s Far West Division, a comprehensive network of hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, emergency centers and diagnostic imaging facilities serving the Nevada and California communities. Through a wide array of inpatient and outpatient healthcare offerings, the Far West Division serves to provide Care, “Above All Else”. HCA Healthcare’s Far West Division is one the most comprehensive medical providers in the area and part of HCA Healthcare, the nation’s leading provider of quality healthcare services with 179 hospitals in the United States and England.