App developed by Torbay doctors changing global trauma care

The PTC App is available on both android and iOS devices
The PTC App is available on both android and iOS devices

18 August 2015

Every day thousands of people across the world die from trauma injuries. A new smartphone App developed by a team of doctors and medical students at Torbay Hospital will help to reduce that number.

Trauma is an increasingly significant cause of death and disability throughout the world, with developing countries having the highest incidence; including injuries from road accidents, violent crime, civil and military conflicts and landmine injuries.

The new Primary Trauma Care (PTC) App, which was launched on Monday 17 August 2015, will be an ideal resource for clinicians to quickly reference information from the PTC manual on how to manage all aspects of treating the severely injured patient, including the ABCDE of trauma, paediatric trauma and trauma in pregnancy. Costing just £2.29, all proceeds will go towards the maintenance and ongoing development of the App and the provision of future PTC courses across the world.

The Primary Trauma Care Foundation (PTCF) was started in 1997 and registered as a charity in 2006, with its manuals endorsed by the World Health organisation in Geneva. It promotes and enables the training of front-line medical professionals in the developing world in how to prevent death and disability in seriously injured patients, using the PTC training system.

PTC is based on straightforward clinical practice and doesn’t require access to high-tech facilities. The PTCF has run courses in about 70 countries worldwide and the PTC manual has been translated into 14 languages.

The new App was the brainwave of Dr Kerri Jones, Associate Medical Director for Innovation and Improvement at Torbay Hospital’s Horizon Institute. Kerri said: “The PTC App will be a great addition to the excellent course that has been run for some years by PTCF as it will continuously reinforce and update knowledge. It seemed the logical next step given the success of the ATLS and other educational Apps, and taps into the widespread use of smartphones which we have observed even in remote environments.”

Funding for the development of the App came from the Royal College of Anaesthetists, and COSECSA Oxford Orthopaedic Link (COOL)*, and the South West Academic Health Science Network.

Exeter GP trainee, Dr George Brighton (previously based at Torbay Hospital), said: “The Primary Trauma Care Foundation does amazing work across the world saving lives by teaching front line staff how to care for trauma victims. Developing a smartphone App to enhance this system and improve access to PTC manual will better enable this purpose.

“As part of an enthusiastic team of junior doctors from Torbay Hospital, we were able to divide up the design and content work and so completed the App in just a few months and with minimal cost. We are all delighted that it’s now been launched.”

Mr Charles Clayton, Chief Executive of Primary Trauma Care Foundation, said: “A very big thanks to Dr George Brighton, Dr Mike Swart, and the team of doctors and medical students at Torbay Hospital, South Devon Healthcare Trust for leading the development of this App. They all donated their time and expertise generously …and with a heavy dose of passion for saving lives and preventing disability throughout the world.”

The PTC App is available on both android and iOS devices and can be downloaded from http://www.primarytraumacare.org/app/.


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