Florida DOH Takes Another Step Forward: Ocala Regional Receives Level II Trauma Verification

After serving well over 3,000 trauma patients in Marion and surrounding counties, Ocala Regional Medical Center’s trauma center has received Level II Trauma Center verification from Florida’s Department of Health (DOH).

“This designation is the result of a significant partnership with regional emergency responders, acute care hospital leaders, municipal, county and state representatives, in addition to area physicians and hospital staff. We would not have been able to accomplish the Level II Trauma Center verification without all parties’ support,” said Randy McVay, chief executive officer of Ocala Regional Medical Center said to the Ocala Star Banner.

Since 2010, our trauma network in Florida has worked to establish trauma centers in underserved areas, including Marion County.  Prior to the opening of the trauma center at Ocala Regional, Trauma Service Area (TSA) 6 ranked the highest for the most automobile accidents.  The county also  transferred more trauma patients to other areas to receive life-saving trauma care than another other county in Florida.  Long transport times interfere with providing immediate care to patients, decreasing survival rates and increasing the likelihood of disability.  The verified Level II trauma center at Ocala Regional enables Marion County citizens to receive life-saving care within the critical 60-minute window in their local community – surrounded by family and friends.

The DOH verification is another step in improving access to quality trauma care for residents all over the state.  The HCA Florida Trauma Network has been honored to help protect Floridians throughout the state, and we look forward to providing quality care to the communities we serve.


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Judge McKibben Concludes Trauma Rule is Based on Facts, Logic and Reason

Florida moved another step closer to establishing a 21st century trauma system and an end to all of the legal wrangling among the state’s trauma centers when Administrative Judge R. Bruce McKibben, a judge for Florida’s Division of Administrative Hearings, signed an order upholding the proposed DOH trauma allocation rule. All of the hard work and input from EMS, local elected officials, patients and families who spoke in favor of local access to trauma care during the public workshops paid off.  In his 71-page response, Judge McKibben concluded that the proposed trauma rule used “facts, logic and reason” and said that “the fact that the proposed rule may cause petitioners economic harm is not a basis to invalidate it.”

We are grateful for all of the support for the life-saving trauma care provided by the HCA Trauma Network and hope this decision will finally put an end to the unnecessary litigation impacting Blake Medical Center, Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point and Ocala Regional Medical Center.

As the trauma rule moves ahead to completion, we look forward continuing to working with the Florida Department of Health to provide more life-saving access to trauma care for all Floridians.


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Happy 4th of July – Staying Safe This Independence Day

Independence Day is this weekend which for many Americans means celebration, fun with family and friends, barbeques, trips to the beach and of course, fireworks.

We urge everyone to stay safe this 4th  of July and remind you to be especially conscious of your safety around fireworks. According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), in the month around the 4th of July, approximately 240 people go to the emergency room each day for firework-related injuries. In 2013, 65 percent of all firework injuries occurred during that time.

In the event of traumatic injury or burns, it is critical that treatment is received as soon as possible. If not treated right away, wounds from severe burns can cause infection, fever and severe scarring. And receiving care at a trauma center within 60 minutes of initial traumatic injury greatly increases a patient’s chance of survival.

Fortunately for South Florida, Kendall Regional Medical Center, is home to a Level II trauma center capable of treating the most serious of injuries resulting from accidents, falls and car wrecks, but Kendall Regional is probably best known for its state of the art burn center with a multidisciplinary team of burn care specialists.

Every community in Florida needs and deserves access to these types of life-saving facilities will continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure access to trauma care for every corner of the state.

We wish you and yours a very happy, healthy and safe Fourth of July!For more firework safety tips from the CPSC, please visit the following link.

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