Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell signed into law a bill that will give $12.5 million in state funds for trauma centers at hospitals throughout the state. The law also will trigger $15 million in federal funds for the establishment of Level III trauma centers, which while not as advanced as Level I and II centers have surgeons available 24 hours and are able to provide initial care for the majority of trauma patients. Hospitals complained that high medical malpractice insurance costs were forcing them to shut down or limit trauma services. The legislation, called the Trauma Systems Stabilization Act, also establishes accreditation of Level III trauma centers and ensures that smaller hospitals in rural areas have access to the funds. It was enthusiastically supported by the Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania. -- by Cinda Becker
Pa. law to generate $27.5 million for trauma care
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