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Partnership protects trauma resources, enhances military preparedness

August 2004

Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., Health Science Center president, and the leaders of institutions operating San Antonioís three Level I trauma centers recently announced the formation of the Trauma Institute of San Antonio, Texas (TRISAT), an innovative and intensive project to more effectively marshal the regionís Level I trauma resources.

According to guidelines from the American College of Surgeons, a Level I trauma center provides comprehensive trauma care, serves as a regional resource, and provides leadership in education, research and system planning. A Level I center is required to have immediate availability of trauma surgeons, anesthesiologists, physician specialists, nurses and resuscitation equipment. Texas has 12 Level I centers.

University Hospital, Wilford Hall Medical Center and Brooke Army Medical Center receive the most seriously injured patients from 71 emergency medical services (EMS) agencies and 30 hospitals located in a 22-county region of South/Central Texas. Wilford Hall Medical Center and Brooke Army Medical Center operate the only Level I trauma centers in the U.S. Department of Defense. As such, the military depends on them to train thousands of physicians for trauma service readiness during wartime.

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