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Mark Rubino is president and chief medical officer at Forbes Regional Hospital. / Evan Sanders, AP

MONROEVILLE, Pa. - When several patients with severe stab wounds arrived at Forbes Regional Hospital on Wednesday morning, physicians immediately realized the day was going to be personal.

For one, they knew many of the patients. And many on the medical staff had their own connections to Franklin Regional High School, where 20 students and a security guard were injured in a stabbing rampage.

"We delivered some of these kids, and some of their moms are our patients," the hospital's medical director, Mark Rubino, said Thursday. "When I saw the first one, we were on a first-name basis. That put the whole thing on a different level."

Rubino's four children, ages 32, 26 and 21-year-old twins, all graduated from the school, he said.

The staff and the patients remained focused and calm, Rubino said, but two counseling sessions were offered to the staff Wednesday, and more resources are being marshaled for the community.

Of eight patients taken to Forbes, three were still in intensive care Thursday. One of those remained in very critical condition, Rubino said. Two will need additional surgery.

The injured were nearly all stabbed in the torso, indicating that they were taken by surprise and had no time to defend themselves, said Christoph Kaufmann, the hospital's director of trauma.

"All had stab wounds to their trunks - chests, abdomens and their backs," and were treated for injuries to the lungs, diaphragm, stomach, pancreas and kidneys, Kaufmann said. "These were not superficial stab wounds."

Most patients will return to normal lives, but "it's too soon to tell" for the most seriously wounded, he said.

Some patients, such as sophomore Brett Hurt, who spoke with reporters at the same news conference, appeared stunned and still unable to process what happened, Rubino said.

He spoke Thursday morning with the superintendent of the Franklin Regional school district about providing healing for emotional trauma. Forbes is part of the Allegheny medical system, which has a pediatric post-traumatic stress team at Pittsburgh's Allegheny General Hospital.

"This is going to take more than school counselors and psychologists," Rubino said. "Some people will need help on the psychiatric level."



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: For docs, stabbings at local school were personal

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