(1) The Legislature finds that there has been a lack of timely access to trauma care due to the state’s fragmented trauma system. This finding is based on the 1999 Trauma System Report on Timely Access to Trauma Care submitted by the department in response to the request of the Legislature.
(2) The Legislature finds that it is necessary to plan for and to establish an inclusive trauma system to meet the needs of trauma victims. An “inclusive trauma system” means a system designed to meet the needs of all injured trauma victims who require care in an acute-care setting and into which every health care provider or facility with resources to care for the injured trauma victim is incorporated. The Legislature deems the benefits of trauma care provided within an inclusive trauma system to be of vital significance to the outcome of a trauma victim.
(3) It is the intent of the Legislature to place primary responsibility for the planning and establishment of a statewide inclusive trauma system with the department. The department shall undertake the implementation of a statewide inclusive trauma system as funding is available.
(4) The Legislature finds that significant benefits are to be obtained by directing the coordination of activities by several state agencies, relative to access to trauma care and the provision of trauma care to all trauma victims. It is the intent of the Legislature that the department, the Agency for Health Care Administration, the Board of Medicine, and the Board of Nursing establish interagency teams and agreements for the development of guidelines, standards, and rules for those portions of the inclusive state trauma system within the statutory authority of each agency. This coordinated approach will provide the necessary continuum of care for the trauma victim from injury to final hospital discharge. The department has the leadership responsibility for this activity.
(5) In addition, the agencies listed in subsection (4) should undertake to:
(a) Establish a coordinated methodology for monitoring, evaluating, and enforcing the requirements of the state’s inclusive trauma system which recognizes the interests of each agency.
(b) Develop appropriate roles for trauma agencies, to assist in furthering the operation of trauma systems at the regional level. This should include issues of system evaluation as well as managed care.
(c) Develop and submit appropriate requests for waivers of federal requirements which will facilitate the delivery of trauma care.
(d) Develop criteria that will become the future basis for consultation between acute care hospitals and trauma centers on the care of trauma victims and the mandatory transfer of appropriate trauma victims to trauma centers.
(e) Develop a coordinated approach to the care of the trauma victim. This shall include the movement of the trauma victim through the system of care and the identification of medical responsibility for each phase of care for out-of-hospital and in-hospital trauma care.
(f) Require the medical director of an emergency medical services provider to have medical accountability for a trauma victim during interfacility transfer.
(6) Furthermore, the Legislature encourages the department to actively foster the provision of trauma care and serve as a catalyst for improvements in the process and outcome of the provision of trauma care in an inclusive trauma system. Among other considerations, the department is required to:
(a) Promote the development of at least one trauma center in every trauma service area.
(b) Promote the development of a trauma agency for each trauma region.
(c) Update the state trauma system plan by February 2005 and at least annually thereafter.