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Format: 04/18/2014
Format: 04/18/2014


West Penn Burn Center Awarded Record Fifth Verification By American Burn Association, American College of Surgeons

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

PITTSBURGH - West Penn Burn Center has again received verification honors by the Committee on Trauma of the American College of Surgeons and the American Burn Association. Verification is a true mark of distinction for a burn center and an indication that the center provides high quality care to burn patients from time of injury through rehabilitation.

Established in 1969, West Penn Burn Center at West Penn Hospital is the first and only burn program in the region to receive ACS-ABA verification honors, and is the only burn center in Pennsylvania to have earned verification five times.

West Penn Burn Center celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2009 under the leadership of Medical Director Larry Jones, MD; Associate Medical Director Roger Barrette, MD, and Surgeon Ariel Aballay, MD.

“I congratulate the leadership and staff of the West Penn Burn Center on this exceptional achievement,” said Gregory H. Burfitt, President and Chief Executive Officer of West Penn Hospital. “The West Penn Burn Center has always been known for innovation, leadership, excellence and compassion in burn care.”

West Penn Burn Center treats nearly 2,000 patients a year from Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland and New York. The Burn Center is fully equipped with state-of-the-art medical systems, special equipment for treating burns, 14 private rooms including six critical care rooms, a family waiting room and children’s playroom.

Every admitted patient has a Burn Center team dedicated to meeting individualized needs including specialized medical care, emotional and psychological counseling, nutrition planning and physical therapy.

In addition to the medical staff, other key members of the team include Nurse Manager Esther Atwood, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, Outreach Coordinator Sandy Smith, BSN, RN-BC, and Director of Critical Care Nursing Pat Zebracki, RN, MSN, NEA-BC.

“I am very proud of our team’s work in again achieving verification status for the West Penn Burn Center, but most proud of their constant dedication to our patients, their caring attitudes and their expertise,” said Dr. Jones.

Verification of burn centers is a joint program of the American Burn Association (ABA) and the American College of Surgeons (ACS). It is a rigorous review program designed to verify a burn center's resources for providing optimal care to burn patients from the time of injury through rehabilitation.

The voluntary program includes an application, pre-review questionnaire, and an in-depth on-site review by members of the ABA Verification Committee, as well as senior members of the ABA. A written report of the site visit team is reviewed by the ABA Verification Committee and by the Committee on Trauma of the ACS.

Burn Center verification is an indicator to government, third-party payers, patients and their families, and accreditation organizations that the center provides high quality patient care and meets the demanding standards for organizational structure, personnel qualifications, facilities resources and medical care services set by the ABA and ACS.

West Penn Burn Center’s Aluminum Cans for Burned Children recycling program was established in 1985, as well as the outreach “Back to School” program, both of which are still in operation, working to benefit burned children. The first Summer Camp for Burned Children was established in 1987 and celebrated its 23rd session in 2009. In addition, West Penn Burn Center opened an Outpatient Services Center in 2009.


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