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Welcome to the Department of Surgery

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Trauma Acute Care Surgery and Critical Care

at University of Colorado Hospital


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Welcome to TACS (Trauma and Acute Care Services). Use the menu to the left to navigate our site, or scroll down for news and information on the history of our unit from UCHealth Insider.


TACS News


Dr. Catherine Garrison Velopulos joins TACS faculty

Catherine Garrison Velopulos MD, MHS, FACS

The Division of Gastrointestinal, Tumor, and Endocrine Surgery is pleased to welcome Catherine Garrison Velopulos MD, MHS, FACS, to the Trauma Acute Care Section.  Dr. Velopulos is board certified in general surgery and surgical critical care, specializing in all types of general surgery including penetrating neck, thoracic and abdominal trauma, large abdominal wall reconstructions, minimally invasive necrosectomy, and many laparoscopic surgical procedures.

After growing up in West Virginia, Wyoming, and Texas, and working as an Emergency Medical Technician during her undergraduate years, Dr. Velopulos received her medical degree at the University of Texas-Houston Health Science Center.  She completed her residency in general surgery and fellowship in surgical critical care at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, and then worked as a Staff Surgeon and Surgical Intensivist at the Malcolm Randall VAMC, taking trauma call at the University of Florida's Level I trauma center as well.

Dr. Velopulos then moved to Baltimore, MD, to complete a combined trauma/research fellowship, during which she obtained her Masters degree in the Graduate Training Program in Clinical Investigation at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, continuing with the Johns Hopkins Surgery Department as an Assistant Professor in the Acute Care Surgery Division.

Dr. Velopulos' research is focused on health care delivery and disparities, focusing on trauma, improving emergency surgical outcomes, and cost effectiveness research.

(January 2016)


Police officer survives shooting, supports cause

Aurora police officer Ryan Burns in the hospital

In November 2014, our UCH trauma team treated Officer Ryan Burns, an Aurora policeman who was shot after pulling over a car. It took four surgeries and five units of blood to save Burns’ life.

Less than two months later, a recovering Burns was already giving back to the community that supported him by initiating a blood drive for City of Aurora employees. According to CBS Denver News, “Officer Burns asked to have this blood drive as a way to say ‘thank you’ to the community for supporting him, to the doctors and nurses who helped to save his life, and to the donors who gave their blood to help keep him alive.”

Eighty-seven people made appointments to give blood at this special event. For more details, watch the video on Yahoo! Screen. (An advertisement will play before the video.)

(January 2015)



Read more about us in UCHealth Insider:

Trauma Program Redesign Helps Send Volumes Soaring Smooth Surgical Swap for Intensive Care Units Cardiothoracic ICU Opening Creates Unified Surgical ICU Service