The Trauma Unit

The Cook County Trauma Unit is America’s first unit dedicated solely to the care of the acutely injured and since 1966, the unit has served as the nation’s model for trauma care. Under the trauma unit concept, a team consisting of trauma surgeons, emergency medicine physicians, and a dedicated nursing staff function together to obtain the best outcomes. The Cook County Trauma Unit is one the busiest of the seven Level I trauma centers serving the Chicago area with nearly 5000 annual admissions. Approximately 35% of the admissions are secondary to penetrating trauma; more than 10% require operative intervention.

  • 2 Trauma Black Rooms
  • 14 Trauma Resuscitation Beds
  • 10 Trauma Observation Beds
  • 12 Trauma Intensive Care Units Beds

The reputation of the Cook County Trauma Unit is based on the high volume of patients and the extensive research completed by the Department of Trauma. We provide national leadership in trauma policy development. Resident participation in these projects is an integral part of the resident’s experience.   During years two and four, residents complete four-week rotations, the year three rotation is six-weeks. Residents function as part of a trauma team that takes trauma call twice each week. On-call days alternate between the Front Room and the Trauma ICU. Residents learn and execute a wide range of diagnostic protocols developed by the Department of Trauma and become proficient in all trauma procedures. Residents participate in trauma conferences and attend daily teaching rounds. Third year residents act as team leaders for all patients admitted to the Trauma Unit.  Fourth year residents supervise all care on the trauma service with the fifth-year general-surgery resident and coordinate educational programs with the trauma faculty.

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