Introducing the Hackensack University Medical Center’s Mobile Medical Assets

The first Emergency Mobile Trauma Unit (a Mobile Emergency Department & Intensive Care Unit) and several support vehicles have been delivered to Hackensack University Medical Center  and are ready for deployment. In less than a year after Congressman Steve Rothman (D-NJ) and United States Senators Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) announced the allocation of $3.2 million in federal funding to HackensackUMC to develop the first-ever mobile Emergency Trauma Department of its kind.   


MACH-1 is a 43-foot trailer with expandable sides is fully outfitted with seven critical care beds having monitor-defibrillator capability, portable digital X-ray unit, telemedicine capability, portable field laboratory, overhead medical procedure lighting and oxygen generation capability. It is a rapidly deployable fully functional mobile ETD, staffed by HackensackUMC emergency physicians, nurses and operations personnel. It is able to respond to large-scale incidents that result in the need for an on-site ETD and can be pre-deployed to expected events like hurricanes or other potential incidents based on intelligence.

The MSV (Mobile Support Vehicle) is designed and constructed to provide on-scene communications and links back to the medical center as well as the NJ Health Command Center, Office of Emergency Management and the Medical Coordination Centers. It is staffed by operations personnel. 

These units provide our communities with the best on-site medical / trauma care possible.  These mobile units bring the hospital to scene, said Senator Lautenberg. With these vehicles, New Jersey will be better prepared to handle emergencies and disaster response.

"Every day, in our fight to protect our nation, we strive to be as prepared as we possibly can, and to respond with every tool that we have. I am proud to have worked to obtain federal funding for this vehicle, which will undoubtedly change the nature of emergency medical response; it will change the response our emergency personnel are able to provide in the moments after an event; and it will change the lives of those in need of immediate and comprehensive medical attention," said Senator Menendez. 

We have Congressman Rothman, Senators Lautenberg and Menendez, and the U.S. Department of Defense to thank for helping Hackensack University Medical Center bring the next generation in medical preparedness to northern New Jersey and the entire tri-state area, said Robert L. Torre of Hackensack, executive vice president of the HackensackUMC Foundation.

The delivery of these vehicles is a milestone development for a project that will save lives and minimize harm. The mobile trauma unit that we unveil today will enable emergency responders to provide advanced, on-the-scene medical care in the event of a terrorist attack or large-scale disaster. Its compact design, which enables movement through tightly packed areas, is especially important because in the event that we can’t get victims to a hospital for care, we will bring a hospital to the victims, said Congressman Rothman. As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, I consider it a privilege to fight to bring federal funding for such cutting edge, life-saving equipment to our community. Not only will the development of this trauma theatre benefit New Jerseyans, but the Defense Department plans to replicate it in urban and suburban areas all across the country. 


We now have a unit that will be an invaluable asset to our region should we need to respond to a large scale incident that requires an on-site Emergency Department, said Joseph Feldman, M.D., of New York, chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at HackensackUMC. I am confident that it will substantially improve the capability for on-scene treatment at major incidents over what is currently available only through local Emergency Medical Service units, and hopefully we can dramatically decrease the number of casualties suffered in any given disaster.

Dr. Feldman explained the medical center continues to work with the U.S. Department of Defense in developing and establishing the HackensackUMC Regional Response Program. The introduction of the first Emergency Mobile Trauma Unit and several support vehicles is the first phase of a three part program. 

The second phase of the HackensackUMC Regional Response Program is developing and constructing a Mobile Operating Theatre that interlocks and attaches to the ETU. This will allow life saving surgical procedures to be performed while the victim is still at the scene. We expect to take delivery of the Mobile Surgical Suite (MSS) before the end of 2011.


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