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About the Level I Trauma Center

Level I Trauma Center RecertificationThe trauma center at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston (UTMB Health) is one of the largest and most technologically sophisticated emergency care facilities in the world. Designated a Level I trauma center, it serves as the lead trauma facility for a nine-county region of southeast Texas. It is the only Level I trauma center in the region that is also a Level I Burn Center.

ER in motionIn the United States, trauma centers are ranked according to standards established by the American College of Surgeons, from Level I (comprehensive service) to Level III (limited care). The different levels refer to the kinds of resources available in a trauma center and the number of patients admitted annually.

UTMB's trauma center offers the full range of every medical and surgical specialty 24/7, 365 days a year. It can respond to diverse medical needs, such as mass casualties, multiple traumas, closed-head injury, severe burns, petroleum industry accidents, hazardous material exposure, heart attacks and a variety of minor complaints that are treated simultaneously.

Level 1 Requirements

A Level I trauma center provides the highest level of surgical care to trauma patients. Being treated at a Level 1 trauma center increases a seriously injured patient's chances of survival by an estimated 20 to 25 percent. It has a full range of specialists and equipment available 24 hours a day and admits a minimum required annual volume of severely injured patients.

Available
24-hrs.

Full range specialists, surgeons, equipment

Req. Annual Volume

Education Program

Research Program

Transfer agreement

Level I

check

check

check

check

check

-

Level II

check

check

check

-
-
-

Level III

check

limited

-
-
-

check


At a Level I trauma center, a team of physicians, surgeons, nurses, X-ray technicians and other health professionals is available 24 hours a day. There is always a trauma surgeon, a neurosurgeon, a respiratory therapist and other designated staff physically present on the UTMB campus. A typical UTMB trauma team consists of a physician faculty member, three residents and emergency room nurses. One trauma team is always on call at any given time.

Additionally, the Level I trauma center has an education program, preventive and outreach
programs, a program of research, is a leader in trauma education and injury prevention, and is a referral resource for communities in nearby regions.

The Level 1 designation is granted by the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDSHS). The American College of Surgeons, on behalf TDSHS, makes the actual quality review. The Level I designation is valid for three years.