Burgess, Green Introduce Trauma Reauthorization Bill
February 26, 2014
Washington, D.C. – Reps. Michael Burgess (TX-26) and Gene Green (D-TX) yesterday introduced a bill to reauthorize grant programs to save critical trauma systems in the U.S.
The Trauma Systems Regionalization of Emergency Care Reauthorization Act, H.R. 4080, would reauthorize two important grant mechanisms, the Trauma Care Systems Planning Grants and the Regionalization of Emergency Care Systems. The first supports state and rural development of trauma systems and the second funds pilot projects to design, implement, and evaluate innovative models of regionalized emergency care. It would also direct states to update their model trauma care plan with the input of updated stakeholders one year after enactment.
“The assumption that trauma care will always be there when we need it is sadly untrue,” Burgess said. “Forty-two states lack fully developed trauma systems. To let another system atrophy is to let the disparity between areas with access to trauma care and those that don’t increase until entire states lack critical care that will save its residents when the unthinkable happens. We cannot let that happen.”
“Trauma is the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 45,” Green said. “The even bigger tragedy is that many of these deaths could be prevented if victims had access to trauma care within an hour of a severe traumatic injury.”
The regionalization of Trauma Care Systems would make immediate and effective care available to patients around the country, and accessibility is the difference between life and death.
The bill has been supported by the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons, the American Burn Association, the Association of Critical Care Transport the American College of Emergency Physicians, the American College of Surgeons, the American Trauma Society, the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the Orthopedic Trauma Association and the Trauma Center Association of America.
Burgess, a physician for nearly three decades, and Green have been longtime partners on this issue. Burgess and Green both serve on the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health.