Swedish Medical Center to Spend $50 Million on Neuroscience Hospital Expansion

Swedish Medical Center, the region’s leading stroke and neuroscience center, is pleased to announce it is moving forward on a $50 million expansion. In an effort to further align its neuroscience services; this is the second largest expansion in recent Swedish history.

Highlights include:
• Adding needed critical care beds and medical surgical beds, both of which maintain high occupancy levels today.
• Adding 65,000 square feet to the campus and renovating 28,000 square feet.
• Creating 39 incremental beds that will be dedicated to our neuroscience program.
• Constructing two additional floors to our south tower resulting in new neuroscience, medical and surgical beds.
• Constructing a new neurocritical care unit to address more significant patient needs and volume.
• Redesigning a new lobby and entrance to the neuroscience portion of the hospital, creating a workspace for our neuroscience program to collaborate more efficiently.
• Purchasing an additional outpatient 3T MRI for advanced neurological imaging.

“We are extremely excited for this investment by HealthONE in our neuroscience program,” said Mary White, President and CEO Swedish Medical Center. “We truly are the region’s number one neuroscience and spine program, and this expansion ensures we continue down that path. We plan to continue having our community say, Take me to Swedish!”

Swedish Medical Center has long been the region’s leader in neurosciences, as evidenced by these accomplishments and designations:
• The first hospital in the Rocky Mountain region to receive a Primary Stroke Center designation from the Joint Commission in 2004.
• In 2013 Swedish became the first hospital in the region to earn the Comprehensive Stroke Center designation from the Joint Commission.
• Also in 2013, Swedish received the “Get with the Guidelines” GOLD Stroke designation from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association.
• Swedish has the fastest growing Deep Brain Stimulation program in the region.
• Finally, Swedish Medical Center treats MORE strokes, FASTER:
• Door to Neurology Evaluation: 7.5 minutes compared to the national goal of 20 minutes
• Door to CT First Slice: 17 minutes compared to the national goal of 25 minutes
• Door to IV t-PA started: 40.8 minutes compared to the national average of 60 minutes or less
• 26% of patients taken to Swedish receive IV t-PA compared to the national average of 5%
Because of his dedication to stroke care, program quality and growth at Swedish and throughout the region, Chris Fanale, M.D. has been named the chair of the neuro hospital planning committee.

“This expansion will add much needed beds, infrastructure and technology to our campus,” said Fanale. “We are ensuring a foundation for the many years of growth ahead.”

Additionally what sets Swedish Medical Center apart from other neuroscience programs in the region is their highly recognized Acute Inpatient Rehab Facility, relationship with HealthONE’s Spalding Rehabilitation Hospital, and the shared campus and collaboration with two renowned neuroscience institutions including Craig Hospital and the Colorado Neurological Institute.

Swedish Medical Center’s Acute Inpatient Rehab Facility is ranked among the top facilities in the country. It was recently named “Top Performer” by the Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation. Swedish Acute Rehab is an important part of the pathway to recovery, celebrating milestones and regaining independence for neurological patients.

Spalding Rehabilitation Hospital was the first licensed Acute Rehab Hospital in the state and is a part of the HealthONE family of hospitals. With over 45 years of experience, Spalding offers clinical expertise in treating traumatic brain injury patients.

Swedish Medical Center is fortunate to have the campus of Craig Hospital adjacent to its own. Craig has been a world-renowned specialty neurorehabilitation hospital for patients with spinal cord injury and brain injury since 1956.

Colorado Neurological Institute (CNI) is a 25-year-old not-for-profit that currently facilitates 50 clinical trials, provides care coordination to outpatients with neurological conditions, and operates an outpatient rehab program.

Construction will begin in the fourth quarter of 2014 and is expected to take place over approximately three years.

Swedish Medical Center Announces Partnership with Loveland Ski Club: Love What Moves You!

(Englewood, CO) Swedish Medical Center is proud to announce a three year, exclusive partnership with the Loveland Ski Club: Love What Moves You. The partnership is generating extra excitement as both Swedish Medical Center employees and Loveland Ski Team members are glued to the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games to see the young favorite Mikaela Shiffrin compete. Over the past 4 years Shiffrin has competed and trained at Loveland Ski Area in preparation. Shiffrin placed fifth in her Olympic debut, missing a medal by 0.23 seconds in the Giant Slalom. At only 18 years old, Shiffrin is a favorite in the upcoming Ladies’ Slalom.

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The relationship between Swedish Medical Center and Loveland Ski Club is one that will provide education and injury prevention for club members and their families as well as medical directorship of the club. Additionally, Swedish Medical Center provides a one-call option to club members and their families for healthcare resources: 1-855-SWEDSPRT (1-855-793-7778).

“Skiing is such a part of the culture of Colorado,” said Mary M. White, President and CEO Swedish Medical Center. “We are very excited to have the opportunity to be a part of not only a Colorado past time, but also a club and a mountain that attracts skiers from across the Front Range. It’s members of our community that are enjoying skiing at Loveland and we want to serve them in every way that we can.”

The Loveland Ski Club consists or more than 100 racers, ranging in age from five to 20-years-old, 12 coaches and 82 families who live throughout the Front Range.

“Partnering with Swedish is a natural fit for us,” said John Hale, Director of Loveland Ski Club. “They are such a figure in the community, they are a Level One Trauma Center and while they have expertise in the types of injuries we can see in this sport, they also have a commitment to education throughout the community.”

The health education and injury prevention will be a combination of programs selected by and created for the club members and their families, as well as seminars from the Spirit of Women program providing age appropriate and relevant health and wellness topics. Seminars are open to the public and include everything from, ‘It’s a Slippery Slope: Injury Prevention’ to ‘Hit Me With Your Best Shot’ a seminar about teenage vaccines.IMG_7747

Medical directorship is provided by Orthopedic Physicians of Colorado and if needed, the orthopedic trauma team consisting of Wade Smith, MD and Steve Morgan, MD in the event of a traumatic injury.

“We believe in education and injury prevention,” said John Reister, MD of OPC. “We also understand that ski racing is an extreme sport and injuries do happen. We are excited to provide fast, quality, comprehensive care to the racers and families of the Loveland Ski Club.”

This partnership is another way Swedish Medical Center is continuing their long tradition of being involved in the community they serve and providing education and comprehensive care. For more information visit www.SwedishHospital.com or visit us at our booth at one of the many races hosted by the Loveland Ski Club throughout the season.

 

About Swedish Medical Center (www.SwedishHospital.com)

Swedish Medical Center in Englewood, Colorado, part of HealthONE, serves as the Rocky Mountain Region’s referral center for neurotrauma and as the region’s first Joint Commission certified Comprehensive Stroke Center, a recognized leader in the most advanced stroke care. Swedish offers patients the highest quality care and the most advanced technologies and treatments in nearly every medical specialty and is an eight time winner of the National Research Corporation Consumer Choice Award and a Top 100 Hospital recognized by Reuters. An acute care hospital with 368 licensed beds, Swedish is located in the south metro Denver area where it has been a proud member of the community for more than 100 years. Annually, Swedish cares for more than 200,000 patients with a team of 2,000 dedicated employees, 500 volunteers and more than 1,600 physicians.

About Loveland Ski Club
Our goal is to provide world-class alpine ski training, close to home, combined with exceptional coaching and curriculum. We offer a high-quality, dedicated training environment that is meticulously prepared, technologically advanced and well-staffed. In this setting, an athlete has every opportunity to reach his or her potential, whether that be a lifelong love of the sport, USSA competitions, FIS racing, the Collegiate ranks, the National team, World Cup, or the Olympic Games. We provide this training in a unique setting that allows an athlete to live in their own family home, attend their own school and still have essential access to world-class training. In this pursuit, we are passionately committed to acquiring, developing, and perfecting fundamental skills. We place a priority on helping our athletes develop their fundamental skills because we firmly believe that these fundamentals provide the structural basis for becoming both a successful racer and lifetime skier.

 

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A Wounded Warrior’s Story of Recovery

Taking orders isn’t something Senior Master Sergeant Martin Smith is used to. The active duty Air Force member and father of four is usually the one telling others how things are done. But a recent turn of events in Martin’s life led him to become the one taking orders from his doctors at MOTUS also known as Mountain Orthopedic Trauma Surgeons at Swedish. HPIM2443

In August 2012, Martin was on his way home from work in Colorado Springs. This was a commute he often traveled on his motorcycle. “There was a lot of construction that day,” said Martin. “I wasn’t aware that the road was down to one lane and as I braked, I slide downhill, swerved and hit the car in front of me.” Martin severely broke his left leg in multiple places. Lying on the ground, he knew there was a big problem due to the amount of blood coming from his leg. He took his belt and made a tourniquet to stop the bleeding as someone else from the scene came to his aid. “This guy came to help me and held the tourniquet in place until AirLife came to take me to the hospital,” explains Martin.

He was rushed to Swedish Medical Center where he was immediately assessed by orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Wade Smith. “Martin had suffered an open tibia fracture,” explains Dr. Smith. “Not only were bones of the leg shattered, the skin and muscles were torn off leaving the bone exposed to infection.” Due to the severity of Martin’s injury, Dr. Smith was unable to save his entire leg. “In some cases of severe limb trauma, amputation is unavoidable and in fact, can provide better long term function than a severely damaged leg. However, it is critical to use all means to preserve as much of the limb as possible to enhance future function and return to life,” says Dr. Smith. Martin underwent a below knee amputation.

“I was in a state of shock and never thought I was going to lose some of my leg,” said Martin. “I wasn’t really able to soak it all in until after surgery.” He received a prosthetic and did months of post-surgery therapy. “It was a stressful time for me but Dr. Smith always knew what to say to calm me down in the situation. One thing he said that changed my life around was to stop being a patient and start being an athlete again, so I did.”

Martin swam competitively in high school and has always considered himself athletic. Shortly after his conversation with Dr. Smith, Martin received the chance of a lifetime and was asked to be a part of the 2013 Warrior Games.

Smith, Martin divingThe Warrior Games showcase the spirit of competition for wounded, ill or injured service members from all military branches. He made the swim team and won the silver medal in the below knee amputee category. “It was one of the greatest moments of my life and one of my biggest accomplishments,” said Martin. “Dr. Smith was really my motivation to go beyond what I believed I could do at that point in time in my life.”

“I’m glad that as a team, we were able to get Martin back to where he once was in his life. He is an extraordinary person who just needed a little support to believe in himself again,” said Dr. Smith.

Martin plans on retiring from the military this year and may consider competing in the Warrior Games again next year. His goal is to ride a motorcycle and share this hobby with his wife again. Martin says he owes his current life to Dr. Smith and MOTUS and the medical expertise they gave him during the most difficult time of his life. “I want to thank Dr. Smith for kicking my butt and getting me back to living my life!”

 

Swedish Medical Center First In State For Joint Commission Award In Cardiovascular Services

Awarded in Multiple Coronary Specialties and Receives Mission: Lifeline Recognition by American Heart Association

(Englewood, Colorado) Swedish Medical Center
has been reaccredited by The Joint Commission for Cardiovascular Services and continues to be the only hospital in the state with accreditations in Advanced Heart Failure, Coronary Artery Bypass and Coronary Artery Disease. They have also received Mission: Lifeline Gold Level status recognition by the American Heart Association for the second year in a row. jointcommissionseal

“This achievement acknowledges the exceptional care our Cardiology team provides patients in the Denvermetro
area and beyond,” said Mary M. White, President and CEO of Swedish Medical Center. “Their dedication to quality healthcare deserves to be recognized.”

The Heart Center at Swedish Medical Center offers
comprehensive cardiac care for patients through
coordination of EMS responders, the Emergency
Department, and an experienced team of healthcare
professionals who ensure patients receive appropriate
and timely care for their condition.

“The Cardiovascular Services Team has worked hard
to provide the community with a comprehensive
program from chest pain to heart attacks to open
heart surgery and chronic illness such as heart failure.
We strive to provide the best possible experience
for our patients based on national standards,” says
Associate Chief Nursing Officer and Cardiac Services
Director Paula Grassmick.

Icons2013_ML_Receiving_Gold_Receiving_4C

Hospitals recognized by the American Heart Association for the Mission: Lifeline Gold award have demonstrated their ability to provide cardiac care at the highest level for patients with STEMI type heart attacks, the most life threatening heart attack, for at least two years. At a Gold Level hospital, all heart attack patients have rapid access, skillful and timely intervention and the highest level of on-going heart care treatment following the latest American Heart Association guidelines. Swedish’s median door-to-balloon times for cardiac alert patients are among the best in the region.

“This achievement is validation of the innovative care that we offer here at Swedish. Our cardiac team has worked very hard to bring the best care to our patients and The Joint Commission and AHA have seen that expertise and chosen to recognize us for it,” says Deborah O’Neill, Cardiovascular Nurse Practitioner.

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About Swedish Medical Center (www.SwedishHospital.com)
Swedish Medical Center in Englewood, Colorado, part of HealthONE, is a Level 1 Trauma Center and Joint-Commission-accredited Stroke, Cardiology and Cancer Center. Swedish has the highest quality care and the most advanced technologies and treatments in nearly every medical specialty and is an eight time winner of the National Research Corporation Consumer Choice Award and a Top 100 Hospital recognized by Reuters.
An acute care hospital with 368 licensed beds, Swedish is located in the south metro Denver area where it has been a proud member of the community for more than 100 years. Annually, Swedish cares for more than 200,000 patients with a team of 2,000 dedicated employees, 500 volunteers and more than 1,300 physicians.

 

Off-Duty Swedish Nurse Helps Save Man’s Life


“I don’t remember much but from what I heard, I was saved by some
angels.”

Sixty-eight year old James Southard was out and about on a normal Thursday afternoon with his wife Michele and his 8-month old grandson and their two dogs. They had just finished up a routine visit at the veterinary clinic and were on their way home.  Getting into the car, James says he felt normal, nothing out of the ordinary but as he was pulling out of the parking lot he stepped on the break and yelled out  “oh no!”  The next thing his wife Michele knew, James was passed out in the driver’s seat. “I was so scared, I put the car in park and got out to start screaming for help,” she explains.

At the same moment that James passed out, off-duty Swedish Emergency Department RN Debora Rewerts was across the street gassing up her car. She pulled out of the parking lot when she noticed traffic wasn’t moving and there was a man lying on the ground. “I didn’t think twice and ran over to him. There were already people there trying to help. One man in particular was there trying to speak to him and kept things calm,” says Debora.  At first she thought James was having a stroke. Someone had already called 9-1-1 so Debora called into the Emergency Department at Swedish Medical Center to warn them a stroke patient was soon to be on their way.

Shortly after the call to the ED, James stopped breathing. The Englewood Fire Department on the way, Debora and another man started administering CPR. “Being a nurse and reacting to emergencies is what I’ve done for 24 years. It’s like second nature,” says Debora.  James was taken to Swedish by ambulance.

“Everyone played a prime part in saving his life. It was just a sense of relief that I wasn’t alone,” says his wife Michele.  She explains that once James was transported to the hospital, a stranger helped to bring her, and her grandson along with the two dogs to the emergency waiting room. “There were so many strangers who helped in this situation. They are truly our angels and I’m so grateful they were there for us,” Michele explains.  Upon arrival to the hospital it was determined that James wasn’t having a stroke but was suffering from a heart attack and he was rushed to the Cardiac Cath Lab where he immediately received a stent and was then taken to the Critical Care Unit.

“God protected me, that is all I can say,” says James.  Debora and James were reunited the day after the incident and it couldn’t have been a better moment for everyone involved. “He looks great! It’s so rewarding to see him,” Debora said with a smile.

“Life is short, Debora expanded mine, that’s for sure!” says James.

Tips for Preventing your Child from Getting Hurt

As a dedicated parent, you undoubtedly want to protect your child from harm as much as possible. Parents often remark that when their children hurt, they hurt too, and nothing is more nerve-racking than taking your child to the hospital. Luckily, there are several ways to help your child play safer and avoid physical injury.

Swedish Medical Center pediatrician, Dr. Martin Alswang give parents tips on how to keep their child safe in and out of the house.

  • In the kitchen, keep hot liquids away from your child. Avoid carrying hot items and your baby at the same time. Plus, use your stove’s back burners and turn pot handles toward the back of the stove. Make sure to keep glassware, flatware, appliances and appliance cords away from the edges of tables and counters.
  • In the bathroom, keep all medication in a secure place where your child cannot access it. Avoid using euphemisms for medicine such as “candy,” as this could give your child the wrong idea about its uses.
  • Always close toilet seat covers, and always cover all buckets of water and cleaning agents – children can fall in and drown.
  • Never put cleaning agents and chemicals into other bottles (i.e.: soda bottles) as children may see a “soda” bottle and have a drink, injuring themselves.
  • Around the house, keep all lighters and matches safely locked away and do not use candles around young children. Also, use safety gates at the top and bottom of the stairs and be sure to close and lock the basement door to help prevent injuries from falls. Utilize window guards that prevent a window from being opened all the way. Additionally, buy cordless blinds or cut the cords so your child cannot get tangled up in them.
  • Children climbing up TVs or shelving have caused them to topple and have killed and maimed many children. Secure them against the wall with hardware devices and prohibit the act.
  • In the garage, safely store any chemicals in a secured place. Be sure to keep tools off the ground and on high shelves that children cannot reach.
  • In the yard, fence off and cover your pool when you are not actively using it. Never let a child swim or wade without adult supervision. Lastly, make sure all playground equipment is sturdy and soft—cover any sharp corners or edges with padding to help prevent injury.
  • Cover lawn-edging strips especially if metal – falling on the edges can cause deep dirty cuts.
  • Inform visitors who are staying over to be very aware to be careful with their medications, not leave them around, secure them etc.

If you or your child is in need of medical care in Denver, come to Swedish Medical Center, a Level 1 Trauma Center with excellent doctors, nurses and personnel who provide high-quality medical care. We utilize state-of-the-art equipment and pride ourselves on our efficient and capable care. Call us at (303) 788-5000.

Why All Head Injuries Should Be Checked

Head injuries, also known as traumatic brain injuries, can be caused by a jolt, blow, or any sudden trauma to the skull. Symptoms of these injuries will often depend on the severity of the initial trauma and can range from mild to severe. Although some injuries to the brain can be considered only ‘mild’, it is vital that all victims of suspected head trauma be evaluated by a medical professional as soon as possible.

“It is critical to see a trained medical professional to rule out any urgent, life threatening head injuries that may require close monitoring, medications to prevent seizures, or surgical intervention. With advances in technology and imaging techniques, we are now able to gather a better understanding of the nature of each particular head injury allowing us to put forth the most appropriate treatment option. Unlike other medical conditions, it is important to understand that head injuries are cumulative and can significantly change your long term ability to carry out mental and physical activities,” explains Swedish PA-C Tyler Schaefer MMS.

Read on to learn why it is so important that all head injuries be checked by a doctor.

  • To ensure a healthy oxygen supply: If the brain becomes injured, swelling, inflammation, and other problems can occur that may result in reduced oxygen concentrations in the brain. Without oxygen, brain cells can quickly die and cause damage to brain tissue. Seeing a doctor immediately will help to avoid any complications associated with oxygen deprivation.
  • To look for musculoskeletal injuries: A physician may also recommend diagnostic imaging tests such as x-rays, CT scans, or MRIs to evaluate the patient for any injuries to the skull, spine, or brain tissue. If there are any such injuries, they can be treated before further complications can arise.
  • To check for the presence of hematomas: Hematomas, or ruptured blood vessels, can lead to dangerous amounts of pressure building up in the brain. Once detected, these abnormalities can safely be removed or repaired.
  • To determine a treatment or therapy plan: Even in cases of mild head injury, patients can experience problems with cognition (thinking), mood swings, and sleeping issues long after the injury was sustained. Meeting with a physician can help the patient and his or her loved ones know what to expect and how to deal with the symptoms as effectively as possible to ensure a quick and healthy recovery process.

The Level 1 Trauma Center at Swedish Medical Center in Denver is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide leading-edge medical care when you and your loved ones need it most. Call our hospital today at (303) 788-5000 to learn more about our comprehensive emergency care services.

Signs that Your Loved One is in Need of Emergency Care

Medical emergencies can happen at any time and at any place. Although it can be difficult to be truly prepared for such an event, knowing the symptoms of a medical emergency and what to do if one occurs can allow you to help your loved ones get treatment faster. Below are some of the most common signs that your loved one may be in need of emergency medical care from a hospital in Denver.

Chest pain: Chest pain or tightness that lasts more than a few minutes, or that subsides and comes back, can be a sign of a heart attack. Other heart attack warning signs include sweating, shortness of breath, feelings of anxiety and nausea. Without immediate treatment, a heart attack can lead to permanent disability or death.

Weakness on one side of the body: Sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the face and body, especially when accompanied by difficulty speaking, visual changes or a severe headache, is a warning sign of stroke. These symptoms indicate that immediate emergency medical care is required.

Severe bleeding: Even when caused by a small cut, severe bleeding can be a problem. Bleeding that does not cease with continued pressure should be treated by medical professionals immediately to avoid dangerous levels of blood loss and shock.

Head trauma: Injuries to the head can lead to dangerous bleeding in the brain tissue or in the membranous layers that protect the brain. Even if a person seems alert after head trauma, medical care is recommended.

“If you are critically ill or injured, the best way to get to the ER is via the EMS system. Because of the ability of EMS personnel to provide advance hospital notification and activate specialty services, such as the cardiac cath lab, patients with heart attacks and strokes who arrive via EMS actually have shorter times to treatment, and in the case of stroke, are more likely to be eligible for treatment. Patients often underestimate serious symptoms. If you or a loved one have symptoms of a possible stroke or heart attack, call 911,” says Dylan Luyten MD FACEP, Swedish EMS Medical Director.

Knowing where to go when a medical emergency occurs can help you get treatment faster when you need it most. When making your emergency plans, consider Swedish Medical Center as your hospital of choice. Our 24-hour emergency services department is designated as a Level 1 Trauma Center and is prepared to treat even the most complicated of medical issues. We are ready to treat patients of all ages and have both adult and pediatric board-certified emergency professionals on staff. Call us today at (303) 788-5000 to learn more about our services.

Concussion Warning Signs

Concussions are potentially severe brain injuries that are caused by trauma to the skull. In the United States, sports-related concussions are extremely common, affecting more than 300,000 American athletes annually according to the University of Pittsburgh Brain Trauma Research Center.

By watching the video above, you can learn more about the symptoms of concussions. You can also find out when parents should consider seeking professional medical help for an injured child.

If you suspect that you or your child may have a concussion, the professionals of Swedish Medical Center are available to answer your medical questions, so call us today at (303) 788-5000. Our hospital is the region’s referral center for neurotrauma and is a recognized leader in the treatment of neurological conditions.

What is a Concussion?

“Believe it or not, many (if not most) concussions are preventable. Precautions like wearing a helmet or buckling up can decrease your risk of concussion injury.”—Phyllis Uribe, Swedish Trauma Supervisor. 

A concussion is a form of traumatic brain injury (TBI) that results in the temporary loss of normal brain function. Concussions can be caused by a fall or blow to the head that causes the brain to move quickly back and forth. Although most concussions may be considered relatively minor brain injuries, these events can cause long-term changes in the way that the brain functions and may require treatment at a hospital.

The symptoms of concussion are normally categorized into four groups, depending on how they affect brain function.

  • Thinking/Remembering: These symptoms can include difficulty thinking clearly, concentrating or remembering new information. Some sufferers also feel as if their thinking process has slowed down.
  • Physical: Depending on the area of the brain affected by the concussion, patients can experience a variety of physical symptoms. Headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and fatigue can all occur as the result of concussion. Victims of concussion may also experience sensory difficulties such as light sensitivity and blurry vision.
  • Emotional/Mood: Concussions can also affect a person’s mood by causing irritability, sadness, stress, anxiety or nervousness.
  • Sleep: After a concussion, a victim can have difficulties maintaining healthy sleep patterns. Some sleep more than usual, while others do not sleep enough or have issues falling asleep.

Normally, the symptoms of concussion only occur briefly and resolve completely after a short time. In some cases, however, the symptoms require a much longer recovery period. Some symptoms may also appear long after the injury occurred.

In rare cases, a concussion can lead to serious and life-threatening symptoms that require immediate attention from a hospital’s emergency department. Some of the severe danger signs of concussions include seizures or convulsions, a worsening of symptoms, loss of consciousness, an inability to be woken up, slurred speech and decreased coordination.

The Level I Trauma Center at Swedish Medical Center is available 24 hours per day, seven days a week to provide expert care to you and your loved ones when every second counts. Contact our staff today by calling (303) 788-5000 for more information about our comprehensive medical services.