Jacksonville, FL. — On May 1 Memorial Hospital began operating a Level II Trauma Center, provisional status, after receiving approval from Florida's Department of Health.
Jacksonville is one of the fastest growing communities on the eastern seaboard. Much of this growth is to the east and south of the city - those areas that are farthest away from the only existing trauma center in Jacksonville. The delay in care due to the distance can be the difference between life and death when someone experiences a major trauma, like an automobile accident. This distance also keeps emergency personnel away from the communities they were designed to serve.
Memorial Hospital already operates one of the busiest emergency teams in the City of Jacksonville, handling more than 120,000 annual ER visits from four separate locations, including over 900 trauma patients. By introducing a Level II Trauma Center, it is responding to the needs of the community to have quick access to critical trauma services when they need it most. Lives will be saved.
Brad Talbert, Memorial's CEO, said, "having another Level II Trauma Center in Jacksonville only makes sense. That first hour following a patient's trauma incident is extremely critical for one's survival. A Level II Trauma Center at Memorial Hospital improves the care our Jacksonville community is receiving."
Provisional status begins a year-long verification period to become a Level II Trauma Center designated by the Department of Health. During the test period required for official certification, officials review all aspects of the hospital's trauma program, including staffing, protocols and patient outcomes.
In addition to treating the severely injured, part of Memorial Hospital's role as a Trauma Center is to educate and work with the community on prevention to reduce the number of traumas. Residents throughout Florida also benefit, as the trauma center is a part of the HCA and USF Health statewide trauma network, dedicated to improving access to quality trauma care and services in Florida. This network, containing three other recently-approved Florida HCA facility provisional trauma centers, will share data and research to improve trauma care. The network's focus on quality patient care and expanded research initiatives will lead to best practices that will ultimately save lives.