Eskenazi Health Announces New Medical Director of Smith Level I Shock Trauma Center - Eskenazi Health

Highly-acclaimed Dr. Ben L. Zarzaur Jr. to replace legendary Dr. Gerardo Gomez  

Indianapolis, Dec. 19, 2016 – Eskenazi Health announces that Ben L. Zarzaur Jr., M.D., MPH, has been appointed to the position of medical director of the Smith Level I Shock Trauma Center at Eskenazi Health. He is also currently an associate professor, director of the Center for Outcomes Research in Surgery and vice-chair for Clinical Research in the Department of Surgery at the Indiana University School of Medicine. 

“Dr. Zarzaur is a highly credentialed leader in his field and poised to make a tremendous contribution here at Eskenazi Health,” said Dr. Lisa E. Harris, chief executive officer at Eskenazi Health. “We’re all very pleased to welcome him to our team.”

Prior to joining the IU School of Medicine in 2014, Dr. Zarzaur was an associate professor of Surgery at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, Tennessee where he worked at one of the busiest trauma centers in the United States. Dr. Zarzaur started his professional career as an assistant professor of Surgery at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill in 2004.  While at Chapel Hill, he completed a Masters in Public Health in Epidemiology at the School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina. In 2006, he moved to the University of Tennessee Health Science Center as an assistant professor of Surgery where he rose through the academic ranks to obtain tenure and the rank of associate professor. While in Memphis, Dr. Zarzaur also served as an assistant professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and he as an adjunct professor at the University of Memphis School of Public Health. 

Dr. Zarzaur will replace Dr. Gerardo A. Gomez, who is ending his 26-year run as the medical director of the Smith Level I Shock Trauma Center at Eskenazi Health. During his lengthy tenure, Dr. Gomez made an immeasurable impact on trauma care at Eskenazi Health as well as across the state of Indiana and beyond.

Dr. Zarzaur is a 1996 graduate of the University of Alabama  School of Medicine in Birmingham and received his baccalaureate degree from Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama. He completed both his internship in 1997 and residency in general surgery in 2003 at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. 

An accomplished author of numerous articles for book chapters and journal publications, Dr. Zarzaur is a popular speaker on the medical lecture circuit and has been the recipient of many community, teaching and research awards. His research into the long-term outcomes of injured patients has been funded by the National Trauma Institute and the National Institutes of Health. 

In addition, Dr. Zarzaur is professionally involved in a number of affiliate organizations including the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Western Trauma Association, the Association of Academic Surgery, the Society of University Surgeons, the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the American College of Surgeons. He was deployed as a medical team manager of Tennessee Task Force 1 Urban Search and Rescue Team in support of rescue efforts at Hurricane Sandy.  He continues to be an active member of the team. 

Eskenazi Health treats more than 2,000 trauma patients each year and became the first verified Level I trauma center in the state of Indiana in 1992. It remains one of only three adult Level I trauma centers in Indiana. A Level I trauma center is a comprehensive regional resource that is central to the trauma system. Trauma centers verified as Level I are capable of providing total care for every aspect of injury, from prevention to rehabilitation. Key elements of a Level I trauma center include 24-hour, in-house coverage by trauma surgeons and prompt availability of care in specialties such as orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, radiology, internal medicine and critical care.

Level I trauma centers are committed to injury prevention, public education and continuing training of the trauma team members, as well as continued improvement through a comprehensive quality assessment program and an organized research effort to help direct new innovations in trauma care. 

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CONTACT: Tom Surber
Phone: 317.880.4793
Pager: 317.310.5972 
Email: thomas.surber@eskenazihealth.edu