Banner Thunderbird’s Level I Trauma Center sees busy start in first six months
Banner Thunderbird Level I Trauma Center
Banner Thunderbird Level I Trauma Center
Without question, our trauma center is savings lives.


GLENDALE, Ariz. (May 4, 2018) – In its first six months of operation, Banner Thunderbird Medical Center’s new Level I trauma center cared for 760 trauma patients, or more than four per day, making for a successful start to the Northwest Valley's first trauma center.

Banner Thunderbird’s Level I Trauma Center opened on Oct. 3 and remains the only such center in the Northwest Valley, home to an estimated 750,000 residents.

“This data really underscores the community need for our new Level I trauma center,” said Deb Krmpotic, chief executive officer of Banner Thunderbird. “Without this center, many of these patients would have had to be transported to hospitals outside our community, further delaying life-saving care.

“Without question, our trauma center is savings lives,” she said.

The hospital, located at 5555 W. Thunderbird Road in Glendale, was already the West Valley’s leading provider of emergency care, with more than 106,000 visits annually to its emergency room, when the trauma center opened. Adding a Level I Trauma Center has allowed the hospital to provide total care for every aspect of injury, greatly reducing the need to transfer patients outside the area for life-saving treatment.

Vehicle-related accidents were responsible for most – 61 percent – of the trips to Banner Thunderbird’s trauma center in its first six months of operation. During that timeframe:

·       315 people were treated for injuries resulting from a serious motor vehicle accident

·       88 people were treated for injuries resulting from an on-street motorcycle crash

·       61 people were treated for injuries sustained in a car/pedestrian accident

Second only to vehicle-related accidents, serious falls were responsible for 148 visits to Banner Thunderbird’s trauma center. Forty-seven trauma patients were treated for gunshot wounds, 25 for assault-related injuries and 19 for stab wounds.

Twenty-two patients were treated for injuries resulting from bicycle crashes and 12 for injuries from all-terrain vehicle accidents.

Kumash Patel, MD, medical director of trauma services at Banner Thunderbird, said it’s an unfortunate reality that many of the injuries seen in the trauma center were preventable or avoidable had the individuals made the simple choice of wearing a seatbelt or, in the case of bicycles, motorcycles and ATVs, put on a helmet.

“Our trauma team at Banner Thunderbird does an outstanding job, but the best medicine is an ounce of prevention,” said Dr. Patel. “Whether you’re riding a bicycle, operating a motorcycle or ATV, or even riding in a car, you significantly reduce the odds of a serious injury or death by simply strapping on a helmet or seatbelt.”

Banner Thunderbird’s provisional state level I trauma center allows the hospital to provide the highest level of trauma care and stabilization for trauma patients. All facilities receive “provisional” status (an initial designation lasting one year) as part of their application to be a state-designated trauma center.

Banner Thunderbird is one of four hospitals within Banner designated as a Level I trauma center. The others are located at Banner-University Medical Center Phoenix, Banner Desert Medical Center in Mesa and Banner-University Medical Center Tucson.

Banner Thunderbird Medical Center specializes in heart care, surgical services, obstetrics and gynecology, emergency care, behavioral health, cancer care, rehabilitation and pediatrics, including the West Valley’s only pediatric intensive care unit, pediatric Emergency department and Level III (highest level available) neonatal intensive care unit. The hospital is part of Banner Health, a nonprofit health system with 28 hospitals in six states. For more information, please visit or on Facebook at

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