This legislative session, both the House and Senate are considering bills that circumvent the law and grandfather in trauma centers that courts have ruled were approved under an invalid rule, jeopardizing the quality Florida’s trauma system.
Both HB 7113, filed by Representative Bordeur, and SB 1276, sponsored by Senator Grimsley, will grandfather in disputed HCA trauma centers that state courts have consistently ruled were approved by the Florida Department of Health based on an invalid rule and without an appropriate needs assessment. Grandfathering the HCA trauma centers would circumvent the statewide trauma planning process and threaten the sustainability of other trauma centers, which must maintain certain patient volumes and key trauma surgeons to ensure quality and achieve the best patient outcomes.
Additionally, the Tampa Bay Times recently published the results of a year-long investigation into the state’s trauma centers, and raised serious questions about HCA’s business practices and patient charges related to its trauma centers. To find out more about the series and read its findings, please visit our current trauma news section.
The Safety Net Hospital Alliance of Florida strongly opposes grandfathering any trauma centers. Safety net hospitals encourage lawmakers to direct the Department of Health to continue collaborative and transparent negotiations with all stakeholders involved in the trauma issue in order to develop a statewide trauma rule that best meets the trauma care needs of Florida’s residents and visitors.