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Division of Acute Care Surgery

The Division of Acute Care Surgery in the Department of Surgery and Perioperative Care manages all urgent and emergent surgical diseases including trauma, burns, emergency general surgery and surgical critical care at Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas.

The Division of Acute Care Surgery also oversees all acute care surgery clinical, educational and research programs at Dell Medical School. In addition to being the academic home for trauma surgery faculty, the division partners with many other divisions and departments across the medical school as well as many key advanced practice providers to ensure the best patient and educational experience.

Division of Acute Care Surgery team members in an operating room.

Clinical Programs

Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas is an American College of Surgeons Verified and State of Texas Designated Level 1 Trauma Center. It is the only adult Level 1 trauma in the 11-county Central Texas region surrounding the city of Austin. The Level 1 trauma center provides unmatched care for the most severely injured patients and has every medical and surgical subspecialist available at a moment’s notice. Jayson Aydelotte, M.D. serves as the trauma medical director.

The 30-bed surgical ICU is staffed by four surgical intensivists and takes care of all critically ill surgical patients from surgical services including trauma, general surgery, surgical oncology, neurosurgery, plastic surgery, obstetrics and gynecology and orthopedics. The unit is led by director Marc Trust, M.D.

The emergency general surgery service is available in the hospital 24/7 to provide timely surgical evaluation and operative management of a wide variety of surgical emergencies in the emergency department or generated from inpatient consults. The emergency general surgery program is led by Ben Coopwood, M.D.

The newly established burn program cares for all burns and is the only burn program in Central Texas between San Antonio and Dallas. Division faculty member Jayson Aydelotte, M.D., serves as the burn program’s director.

The division partners with the Division of Orthopaedics to provide the highest level of trauma care related to bones, joints, tendons, ligaments and muscles. The program is directed by faculty member David Laverty, M.D.

In addition to the programs mentioned above, the trauma team works closely with trauma liaisons within the following additional specialties:

Commitment to Quality

The division participates in the American College of Surgeons Trauma Quality Improvement Program, which aims to elevate the quality of trauma care for patients using data to improve patient outcomes.

Educational Programs

Undergraduate Medical Education

In undergraduate medical education, the division’s service provides a robust educational experience for second-year Dell Med students through the eight-week surgery clerkship. Students spend four weeks of the clerkship with the Division of Acute Care Surgery and have the opportunity to participate in the operative and nonoperative care of patients in trauma, emergency general surgery, burns and surgical critical care.

The division hosts an opportunity for an Acting Internship in Acute Care General Surgery for fourth-year med students preparing to enter residency. The four-week rotations include increased responsibility with the care team.

Fourth-year medical students from Liaison on Committee on Medical Education or American Osteopathic Association accredited institutions are eligible to apply for the acting Internship in Acute Care General Surgery. See the visiting students page for more information, including a list of all available acting internships.

Graduate Medical Education

The Acute Care Surgery service is covered by residents from general surgery, orthopaedic surgery, emergency medicine and the transitional program. The resident team includes a PGY-5, PGY-3 and PGY-2 from the department’s General Surgery Residency and four PGY-1 residents from a variety of specialties.

Continuing Medical Education

In addition to a range of continuing medical education offerings, the division hosts a monthly trauma conference, a monthly surgical critical care conference, the annual Austin Trauma and Critical Care Conference and courses on Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) and Advanced Surgical Skills for Exposure in Trauma (ASSET).

Research

The division’s team members are committed to investigation and host a weekly trauma research meeting on Wednesdays at noon as well as publish regularly in peer-reviewed journals on topics relating to acute care surgery.