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Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital Certified as Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center

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Posted at 8:15 PM, Nov 22, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-22 21:26:44-05

INDIANAPOLIS — Doctors say keeping families together through recovery from traumatic injuries is the key to healing.

For Nadia Zaarur and her 13-year-old daughter Tuleen Bataineh, being able to be together brought them comfort during their recovery.

Below is what was left of their family’s car after a traumatic crash left the mother and daughter critically injured.

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“The bus that hit us was speeding and when we were going to turn, we couldn’t see because of the cornfields,” Tuleen said. “The bus hit the side that I was on.”

The two were airlifted from the scene to St. Vincent Hospital. Each had serious traumatic injuries.

Both had broken bones and internal injures that required surgery. They were in the hospital for nearly two months.

But Nadia and Tuleen were able to stay physically close to one another because the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital is now a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center, meaning both adults and kids can get the highest level of care possible after a traumatic injury.

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“What would have happened if you didn’t have that designation? Where would that child have had to go,” WRTV’s Meredith Hackler asked.

“She would have likely had to go to a different hospital in the city and the family would have been split,” Dr. Ian Ferries, Adult Trauma Surgeon at Ascension St. Vincent, said. “The mother was here in our hospital and needed ICU level care. With this situation they were able to be housed under the same roof and taken care of by a ream of doctors that were able to coordinate them seeing each other.”

Being able to see each other is something doctors say is important for both patient’s mental health.

“We know that there are a lot more cases of post-traumatic stress that happen with trauma than we have realized in the past,” Dr. Brett Engbrecht, Medical Director of the Pediatric Trauma Program at Peyton Manning Children's Hospital, said. “That is a new emphasis for trauma centers in general to think about the mental health of patients.”

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St. Vincent is the only hospital in the state to have a Level 1 Trauma designation for both adults and kids. Doctors say it will make the whole state safer for patients.

"Overall, for the Indianapolis metropolitan area it significantly increases the level of care that is provided,” Dr. Ferries said. “Statewide it provides a level that is unique to the Midwest certainly but is probably unique nationally. "

Nadia and Tuleen are now back at home. Nabil Bataineh, Nadia's husband, says having them in the same place while recovering was a blessing.

"For me, because I was visiting daily it was really easy. I could see both in one trip," Nabil said.

As for Tuleen, she says she has learned just how important family truly is.

"I realized how important family is because they are always going to be there," Tuleen said.

According to Ascension St. Vincent, if you are more than an hour away from a trauma center, it significantly increases the likelihood that you will die of the injury.