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Trauma Assessment Team Key Recommendations

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

February 06, 2013

February 6, 2013

Contact: Communications Office
(850) 245-4111

~ Independent team of experts assesses Florida’s Trauma System of Care ~

TALLAHASSEE—An independent seven-member team of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Committee on Trauma (COT) has concluded its external review of Florida’s current trauma system. The four-day assessment was organized to provide the Florida Department of Health (DOH) with recommendations to improve Florida’s trauma system. Individuals who participated on this assessment team had no relationship with Florida by birth, education and training, or employment.

“This ACS site visit represents a milestone in Florida’s Trauma System development. For more than five years, the trauma community has been asking for this systems consultation, and now, the Department has delivered,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “It is time for the trauma community to come together and use these recommendations to make Florida’s trauma system even better. The people of Florida need a trauma system that is inclusive, sustainable and focused on safe, effective, and efficient care for injured patients in Florida.”

“Make peace,” said Robert J. Winchell, MD, FACS, Team Leader, who reminded stakeholders to find ways to collaboratively develop the system. The systems consultation team identified 18 preliminary key recommendations, including the following:

  • Convene a small, multi-disciplinary work group to analyze all existing statutes and regulations pertaining to the trauma system
  • Establish a transparent, broadly accepted process for initial full designation and ongoing re-designation of trauma centers based upon system participation, center performance, participation in quality improvement programs
  • Require that all acute care facilities participate in the inclusive and integrated trauma system as a condition of licensure
  • Evaluate the content, implementation, and method of enforcement of trauma transport protocols (TTPs) to assure uniformity and efficiency of patient flow both within trauma regions as well as statewide
  • Collaborate with the Florida Department of Transportation, Highway Safety Office to initiate and conduct a National Highway Traffic Safety EMS Reassessment

The committee identified several assets in the current system including long-standing legislative support, substantial funding and committed Department leadership. A final report from the systems consultation team is expected to be released within several months. To view the PowerPoint presentation along with the listing of key recommendations, please visit

DOH protects, promotes and improves the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.


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