HCA and USF Health announced their partnership today in a statewide trauma network to improve trauma care in Florida. The partnership stands to take a leadership role in the future of healthcare in Florida.
“Our goal is to have Florida be the safest state in the nation,” says Stephen Klasko, MD, MBA, dean of the College of Medicine and CEO of USF Health.
There are five HCA hospitals that will now be affiliated with USF:
- Blake Medical Center
- Kendall Regional Medical Center
- Lawnwood Regional Medical Center
- Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point
- Orange Park Medical Center
Lawnwood’s Trauma Center is up and running and the other four hospitals have filed letters of intent with the state to establish Level II trauma centers. Each facility has been granted an 18-month extension and program openings are expected to occur sometime in the fall of 2011.
USF will name a Chief of Trauma Medical Director to oversee the network, appoint a medical director of trauma for each hospital and assist with the recruitment of specialists, if needed.
What are the benefits of this alliance?
The HCA hospitals will now be able to convey data to a centralized analysis center at USF Health called the new Florida Trauma Research and Analysis Center (TRAC).This will enhance the research and education abilities of doctors by allowing them to identify trends that may be occurring that could enhance patient safety and the quality of care. It will also allow health care providers to collaborate with each other and consolidate their information. The partnership will also help in those areas where recruiting a physician specialists is a challenge by allowing USF to assist.
Why is this important for Florida residents?
Trauma is the leading cause of death for people ages 1 to 44. Today, only 38% of trauma patients in Florida receive treatment in a designated trauma center – which is below the national average. The state’s goal is to be at 65%, which will now be more easily attainable with more facilities as designated trauma centers, especially in Trauma Service Areas, like these, where no trauma center exists or the state has identified a need for more trauma programs.
“Getting a patient to a trauma center within the first hour of injury, or golden hour, drastically increases their chance of survival,” says Jonathan Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA, FACP, FACMI, president clinical services and Chief Medical Officer for HCA.
State trauma reports indicate that counties that do not have a trauma center, has higher trauma death rates.
Eventually, the goal is to develop a national model for reducing mortality by centralizing the data through the electronic health record (HER), using the most recent innovations in patient care technology and continue to improve upon on-going treatment programs.
“In a time of great healthcare transformation, it’s more important than ever that the state’s top medical schools work with hospitals throughout the state to provide the best care”, Dr. Klasko, CEO USF Health.
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