Aitkin hospital shares emergency care news

Tina Hughley, RN, Emergency Department Manager

Riverwood Healthcare Center is pleased to welcome Registered Nurse Tina Hughley as Emergency Department Manager. In addition to emergency services, she oversees nurses for the hospital’s infusion center and radiology department.

Since 2010, Hughley has worked as a nurse at Riverwood, working in many areas of hospital nursing with emergency care being her primary area for the past five years. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from the College of St. Scholastica in 2012.

“We are thrilled to see Tina move into this important leadership position at Riverwood,” said Jeanine LeBlanc, director of nursing. “Her nursing experience in emergency care combined with her dedication to compassionate patient care are tremendous assets.”

 Trauma care recertification

Riverwood Healthcare Center has been recertified as a Level 3 Trauma Center by the Minnesota Department of Health. In 2006, Riverwood was the second hospital in Minnesota to get the Level 3 Trauma Center certification and the first in rural Minnesota.

“Riverwood has a strong commitment to caring for trauma patients where rapid medical response is critical to saving lives,” says Dr. Jim Harris, Riverwood Emergency Department Medical Director and Trauma Program Medical Director. “Through the statewide trauma system, we participate in continuous performance improvement activities and staff training, ensuring that all our ED nurses and physicians are recertified in advanced lifesaving and trauma care annually.”

 The Minnesota Department of Health Trauma Registry is a voluntary program and requires substantial commitment, staff training and ongoing investment in resources and equipment.

For a severely injured person, the time between sustaining an injury and receiving definitive care is the most important predictor of survival—called the “golden hour.” The chance of survival diminishes with time. A strong local trauma center enhances the chance of survival, regardless of proximity to an urban hospital offering a higher level of trauma care.

 Summer safety tips

“Every summer we treat many injuries related to seasonal outdoor activities,” said Tina Hughley, RN, Emergency Department manager. “In this area of many lakes and rivers, staying safe during outings on the water is especially important.”

Riverwood’s emergency care team offer these tips for boating safety:

  • Always check local weather conditions before departure. If you notice darkening clouds, changing winds or sudden drops in temperature, play it safe by getting off the water.
  • Operate your watercraft at a safe speed at all times, especially in crowded areas. Stay alert at all times and steer clear of large vessels and watercraft that take longer to stop or turn.
  • Let someone else know where you’re going and how long you’re going to be gone. Have communication and signal equipment in your watercraft.
  • Make sure another person on board knows how to operate the boat in the event the driver becomes ill or injured.
  • Assign and fit everyone going out on the water with a life jacket. Don’t just carry it. Wear it!
  • Don’t drink and drive on the water. The probability of being involved in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved.

Whenever you encounter a life-threatening injury, call 911. Riverwood’s Emergency Department is staffed 24/7 with dedicated emergency medicine physicians, with a general surgeon and an orthopaedic surgeon on call, plus a team of nurses experienced in trauma care.  An on-site helipad at the hospital enables fast air transport of patients in or out when needed.