WRISS is an emergency department-based system that captures data on persons treated for gunshot wounds and assault-related sharp instrument wounds. The system is based on a Massachusetts reporting mandate dating back to 1927 requiring health care providers to report shootings and stabbing incidents to state and local police departments. WRISS was implemented as a pilot project in Springfield, Boston, and Lawrence in 1990-1991. By the end of 1993 the system had expanded to all Massachusetts acute care hospital emergency departments (EDs) and served as a model for other states.1994 was the first year of statewide reporting. Currently, all Massachusetts EDs participate in WRISS using a standardized form to report a number of demographic and incident specific variables.

Data are analyzed and results are provided to injury prevention professionals, law enforcement personnel, and health and medical staff throughout the Commonwealth. Aggregated WRISS data are available on MassCHIP - the Department's web-based health-related data warehouse. Search options include patient's gender, specific age groups, type of weapon, intent of the injury (e.g., assault-related), patient's city or town of residence, type of location (e.g., bar/club), and regional categories (e.g., Community Health Network Areas). Please visit MassCHIP for more information including how to download the free software.

If you have specific data needs not met through MassCHIP, please feel free to contact ISP at 617-624-5648 or place a data request on-line at MDPH-ISP@state.ma.us.

Emergency department personnel may order additional WRISS forms by contacting the WRISS Hospital Coordinator at 617-624-5668 or on-line at MDPH-ISP@state.ma.us.

WRISS Publications


This information is provided by the Injury Surveillance Program within the Department of Public Health.