Nights Trauma

All residents participate in the night float ("call") rotation. A combination of residents, SRNAs, and CRNAs form a team that helps relieve non-call anesthesia providers and provides anesthesia care to emergency and trauma patients needing surgery after hours and on weekends/holidays.

Nights and weekends are busy because the University of Iowa serves as the major referral center for all of Iowa and many surrounding states. It is the only Level 1 trauma center in Iowa to care for both adults and children.

Cases include:

  • Multi-system trauma
  • Head, spinal cord, chest, abdominal and extremity injury from blunt or penetrating trauma
  • Ill patient requiring emergency surgery for:
    • Acute abdomen
    • Brain injury
    • Infection
    • Bleeding
    • Vascular injury
    • Organ transplantation

CA1 and CA2 residents have two-week blocks of Night Float call several times each year. In general, the CA1 and CA2 residents, SRNAs, and CRNAs provide anesthesia care.

CA3 residents are the team leaders and help triage resources and guide the more junior residents with patient management. CA3 residents also attend "codes" on the floors and attend "trauma activations" in the Emergency Department to manage patient airways in these potentially difficult situations. CA1 and CA2 residents are encouraged to accompany the CA3 resident to codes and traumas as these are valuable learning experiences and another pair of hands is often helpful.

By the end of training, residents are confident and capable of handling any challenging case that comes along.