A REGIONAL trauma network is being hailed as a success after it was found that critically injured patients now have a 30 per cent better chance of survival.

As previously reported in The Gazette, the nationwide networks were set up in April 2012, with regional networks made up of one designated centre supported by surrounding hospitals. In the South Central region, this is the specialist trauma centre in Southampton General Hospital.

An independent audit, produced by the Trauma Audit and Research Network, has found that 24 lives have been saved in the region thanks to the network.

This equates to a 30 per cent better chance of survival and, for every additional survivor, three more patients will make a better recovery than they might otherwise have done.

Basingstoke patients with potentially major injuries can go directly to Southampton or can be taken to the trauma unit at Basingstoke and assessed and resuscitated before being transferred if they need specialist intervention.

Dr Andy Eynon, director of major trauma, said: “At the launch of this system nationwide in 2012, I said it would be the most exciting development in the NHS for a generation, and these results demonstrate just what a milestone it is, all in the space of just two years.”

Professor Chris Moran, national clinical director for trauma for NHS England, said: “People are rightly quick to point out where the NHS falls down, but this report shows our NHS at its best.

“By any international standard, these figures speak for themselves – we are saving more lives than ever before.

“In my daily practice as a surgeon, I am seeing patients survive injuries that would have been fatal just a few years ago.

“The figures also serve as a stark reminder that where change saves life and improves care, we must be flexible and prepared to change the system rapidly to deliver the care that our patients deserve.”