Local doctor involved in national award-winning NSW Trauma App

Local doctor involved in national award-winning NSW Trauma App
A trauma app developed in NSW recently won the Public Sector and Government Market Division at the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) National iAwards in Melbourne.

A highly-skilled team of staff and clinicians from NSW Health, lead by NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation (ACI) Institute of Trauma and Injury Management (ITIM) and including Lismore-based Emergency Physician, Dr Yashvi Wimalasena, designed the Trauma App to provide trauma clinicians with real time clinical guidance and information including flight and drive times to NSW hospitals, hospital blood stores, and specialty capabilities of NSW health facilities.

The iAwards are the biggest innovation and technology awards in Australia, attracting hundreds of entries for the state-wide and national competition, including from well-known large governmental and private institutions and companies.

The Trauma App contains specialised medical calculators, guidelines, and checklists from NSW trauma hospitals and speciality services as well as pre-hospital and retrieval providers.

The pre-hospital component of the app was the brainchild of Dr Wimalasena and two fellow Retrieval Specialists in the Greater Sydney Area Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (GSA HEMS), Dr Karel Habig, and Dr Cliff Reid.

“Winning this award was very exciting as it was the culmination of many years of hard graft,” Dr Wimalasena said.

This award recognises the collaborative effort of numerous NSW Health agencies, clinicians and staff, including statewide trauma and burns services, ambulance, retrieval, pathology services, and specialist trauma centres across the state.

“The NSW Trauma App is a breakthrough innovation to support clinicians in caring for their trauma patients and ensuring they are able to meet each patient’s specific needs.”

Through the app, clinicians can locate blood products to provide appropriate blood transfusions to critically injured patients prior to admission to hospital, something that was previously only available once patients reached hospital.

ITIM’s Clinical Director, Dr Michael Dinh, said evidence suggests modern, interactive decision-support tools, such as the NSW Trauma app, contribute to reduced medical errors and improved patient outcomes.

“Trauma is the most common cause of death in the first half of life,” said Dr Dinh.

“With trauma clinicians in more than 200 hospitals across NSW, resources must be accessible immediately, whether at the scene of an accident, in a rural hospital, or in a major trauma centre.”

The Trauma App includes GPS tracking to provide real time information for all NSW hospitals, including flight and drive time from a patient’s current location and hospital capabilities, Burns units and Paediatric units.

“The development team, lead by the Institute of Trauma and Injury Management, have worked tirelessly to create a product which has exceeded all our expectations and which is easy to use,” Dr Wimalasena said.

The app is now being used by NSW Health, NSW Ambulance, Queensland Health and the New Zealand Major Trauma National Clinical Network. Recent monitoring shows that in the past 18 months 9622 clinicians used the app for over 31,084 clinical sessions in caring for injured trauma patients.

The Trauma App was built in collaboration with a range of services including NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation’s (ACI) Institute of Trauma and Injury Management (ITIM) and Statewide Burn Injury Service, NSW Ambulance Health Emergency and Aeromedical Services, Greater Sydney Area Helicopter Emergency Medical Service, NSW Health Pathology and 20 designated NSW trauma centres that include clinicians from Lismore Base Hospital and Tweed Heads Hospital Trauma Services.

For more information about the Trauma App, visit the ACI website.

Pictured above are winning team members, Institute of Trauma and Injury Management (ITIM) Manager, Christine Lassen, Lismore Base Hospital Emergency Physician, Yashvi Wimalasena and ITIM Project Manager, Ben Hall with their trophy at the recent Australian National Innovation Awards.

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