Kids go to adult trauma centers, treatment delayed

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Florida state guidelines require children with traumatic injuries to be taken to a trauma center specializing in pediatric care, but a new investigation finds dozens of Florida kids are instead taken to adult centers that may be unable to treat them. The result can mean crucial delays in care.

The Tampa Bay Times reports Sunday that previously children went to adult centers when those facilities were significantly closer, or because paramedics believed the child wouldn’t survive a longer journey. But since 2009, the state has approved six new Hospital Corporation of America trauma centers, and some 100 children have been taken to those facilities. More than 60 were then transferred to pediatric trauma centers. Not only can the transfer delay treatment, it can also significantly increase family medical bills.

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