Bradenton, Florida -- Three trauma centers being challenged in court may remain open under a new bill making its way through the Florida House.
The centers are Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point in Pasco County and Blake Medical Center in Bradenton.
Other hospitals such as Tampa
General, St. Joe's and Bayfront Medical Center say the state improperly approved the
trauma centers before the new rules for approving trauma centers had been
A spokesperson for Blake Medical
Center says since opening two years ago its staff has treated more than
2,400 patients, and estimate 66 of those would not have survived if they
had to fly to Tampa or St Pete.
Pano Birbili's mother was in a
serious car accident last year and is glad Blake had a trauma center close to
home to treat her.
"If she had to wait the extra
time for helicopter to get there who knows if she'd still be alive. With the
Trauma Center at Blake it probably saved her life."
The House Bill and a similar one
in the Senate would grandfather any trauma center that's been open for at least
12 months. To stay open the centers would have to submit an application to the
American College of Surgeons Committee and go through a site visit by June 31,
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