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Trauma Center of the Rockies

Trauma Levels and Verification

Designated trauma hospitals must guarantee the immediate availability of surgeons, anesthesiologists, physician specialists, nurses, ancillary services, and resuscitation life-support equipment dedicated 24/7 to the care of trauma patients.

Trauma centers are surveyed by the American College of Surgeons - Commission on Trauma (ACS-COT) and must earn verification as Level I, II, III, or IV. Level I and II centers offer the highest levels of trauma care. Verification by the ACS-COT is a voluntary process that must be requested and earned by a hospital. Trauma Center of the Rockies is verified a Level II trauma center, meaning we provide 24/7 access to among the most advanced, readily available trauma resources and staff to treat life-threatening injuries.

Level II Verification Key Requirements

  • 24-hour-a-day commitment by the medical staff, including trauma surgeons, emergency physicians, anesthesiologists, neurosurgeons and orthopedic specialists.
  • Hospital staff committed to trauma, including staff in emergency, surgery, respiratory therapy, laboratory, radiology, critical care, nursing, pastoral care and rehabilitation.
  • Availability of clinical resources (cardiothoracic surgery, internal medicine, neurosurgery, eye, maxillofacial and plastic surgery, radiological specialties and many others).
  • Rapid air transport (Med Evac or "Air Life")
  • Available consultation to rural areas via a 24-hour referral line.
  • Leadership in trauma education.

Trauma Services at Poudre Valley Hospital is verified a Level III center. A Level III trauma center provides initial patient evaluation and stabilization, including surgical intervention, for the severely injured. An in-house multidisciplinary trauma resuscitation team is immediately available upon arrival of the patient to the emergency department. A Level III trauma center provides comprehensive inpatient services to those patients who can be maintained in a stable or improving condition without specialized care.

Critically injured patients who require more specialty trauma care services are transferred from PVH Trauma Services to Trauma Center of the Rockies, or a Level I trauma center, in accordance with criteria established according to our Northern Colorado's Regional EMS Trauma Advisory Council (RETAC). PVHS works very closely with regional EMS and air-medical services to ensure that the right patient gets to the right facility.

As separately designated trauma centers, Trauma Center of the Rockies and PVH - Trauma Services operate independently. Still, as sister hospitals in Poudre Valley Health System, we do rely on one another to offer the best trauma care for critically injured patients in the region. Together, we provide shared leadership and a strong continuum of trauma care and prevention. PVHS leads the regionalization of trauma care in its commitment to providing Level II and III services via the partnered Trauma Center of the Rockies and Poudre Valley Hospital trauma programs.


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