About Emergency Medicine

The department strives to become the benchmark by which others measure excellence by providing excellent medical care, innovative and effective learning programs as well as world-class original research.

We advance health and the specialty of emergency medicine by always being our patients’ advocates and demonstrating respectful, compassionate, and attentive care. We listen to our patients and visitors and keep them informed as we provide the most efficient and thorough emergency care.

Academic emergency medicine at the University of Arizona began September 1980 as a section of the Department of Surgery. At that time, the section of consisted of only four full-time faculty physicians and the then-named University Medical Center census was less than 20,000 emergency department patient visits annually. Paramedics were new to Tucson and no trauma centers existed in all of southern Arizona. 

Emergency Medicine received academic department status July 1, 2001. Today, more than 60 clinical faculty members practice at Banner - University Medical Center Tucson and Banner - University Medical Center South Emergency Departments, with a combined annual census of 135,000 patient visits. The Tucson campus is the only Level I Trauma Center in the entire southern Arizona region. The South campus has a Level IV trauma center and an adjacent new acute behavioral health/psychiatric hospital. 

The Department offers three top-tier residency programs: two categorical Emergency Medicine Residency Programs, based at Banner - University Medical Center Tucson and Banner - University Medical Center South, and a combined Emergency Medicine and Pediatics Program. Since inception, the Emergency Medicine Residency Program match rate has been 100 percent and the program has produced some of the most outstanding specialists in Emergency Medicine in the country. Fellowship programs are offered in academic research, critical care, EMS, emergency ultrasound, medical simulation, medical toxicology, hospice and palliative medicine and sports medicine.

The Department is proud to have an active teaching role in all four years of the ArizonaMed curriculum at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, most notably, the Emergency Medicine/Critical Care Rotation for fourth-year medical students. 

The Arizona Emergency Medicine Research Center (AEMRC), founded In 1990 as one of eight Centers of Excellence on the The University of Arizona Arizona Health Sciences campus, is the research arm of the Department of Emergency Medicine. It houses the internationally acclaimed Advanced HAZMAT Life Support Program, and has been the recipient of several million dollars in research grants and contracts.

The past has seen tremendous growth and the establishment of excellent clinical, academic and research programs. The future will top the past.