Trauma Care System

The purpose of Wisconsin’'s statewide trauma care system is to reduce death and disability resulting from traumatic injury by providing optimal care of trauma patients and their families, and collecting and analyzing trauma-related data (DHS 118.01).

Wisconsin has 124 of 126 potential hospitals participating in its trauma care classification system, with 9% of them being ACS verified Level I or II and the remaining 91% being a Level III or IV trauma care facility designated by the state as a part of their voluntary participation in the state trauma system.

For a summary glance at Wisconsin Trauma data, the Wisconsin Trauma at a Glance Newsletter, P-01564 (PDF, 387 KB) provides data for 2015-2016 on total numbers, injury types, injury severity, and cases by age and gender.

Information on the Hospital Classification System and both Statewide and Regional Trauma Care meetings can be found using the navigation to the left.

Doctors treating patient at hospital

Spotlight: DHS 118

Chapter DHS 118 provides for the development and implementation of a statewide trauma care system which includes the criteria for classifying hospital’s trauma care capabilities. DHS is required under 256.25 (2) Stats., to base its classification criteria on the standards developed by the American College of Surgeons (ACS).

Chapter DHS 118 requires that a hospital seeking approval as a Level III or IV trauma center to have verification at that level by the ACS or meet the ACS based classification specified by DHS 118.

The ACS recently issued its 2014 guidelines and criteria for review and verification of trauma care centers.  The department proposes to update its classification criteria to be consistent with the 2014 ACS guidelines and criteria.

DHS and partners around the state are working collaboratively to update the trauma guidelines.

For more information, contact the state trauma coordinator.



Information on this page has been organized into two categories. Please choose one of the following tabs.

Trauma Care Registry Database

Contacts and Resources


Wisconsin'’s trauma system is closely aligned with the efforts and activities in the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Program, Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Program and Health Preparedness.

The implementation and development of Wisconsin'’s trauma care system is a result of several important pieces of legislation including:

Last Revised: August 26, 2016