Key messages

  • The implementation of the State Trauma System (VSTS) has brought about considerable improvement in major trauma patient care.
  • The VSTS focusses on the designation of major trauma services, statewide organisation, trauma triage protocols, and education and research

The Victorian State Trauma System (VSTS) was established in 2000 in response to the Review of trauma and emergency services 1999 (RoTES) report. This report made more than 100 recommendations to reduce trauma morbidity and mortality by enhancing trauma patient management. 

The implementation of the VSTS has resulted in significant improvement in major trauma patient care, including lower mortality rates.

Underpinning the VSTS are triage and transfer guidelines that ensure the right patient is delivered to the right hospital in the shortest time.

The VSTS has the following features:

  • designation of two adult hospitals and one paediatric hospital as major trauma services (MTS) operating as the hub of an integrated system
  • statewide system organisation and management of trauma response
  • trauma triage and transfer protocols
  • enhanced retrieval and transfer services
  • education and training to meet the ongoing needs of the trauma workforce and ensure the integration of rehabilitation services
  • research, service and technology developments
  • quality management.