Trauma funding bill signing

Gov. Moore Signs Significant Funding Bills Securing the Future of Trauma Care for Marylanders

May 17, 2024

ANNAPOLIS - Dozens of Shock Trauma team members, trauma survivors and supporters traveled to the state capital Thursday to support Maryland Governor Wes Moore, Senate President Bill Ferguson and House Speaker Adrienne Jones as they signed a consequential bill into law expanding annual funding for Maryland’s renowned statewide trauma system, ensuring access to world-class trauma care for Marylanders well into to the future.

Senate Bill 1092, sponsored by Senator Guy Guzzone, and House Bill 1439, sponsored by Delegate Emily Shetty, ensure long-term funding stability for trauma centers and the larger emergency medical services system across the State. The legislation also provides the resources necessary to continue to evolve and advance the delivery of care for trauma patients.

New funding supports hospital-based trauma centers and care providers through the Maryland Trauma Physician Services Fund (MTPSF), as well as the entities that constitute the core of the statewide trauma system: the Maryland State Police Aviation Command (MSPAC), the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems (MIEMSS), the Senator William H. Amoss Fire, Rescue, and Ambulance Fund, the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute and the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center at the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), which stands at the heart of Maryland’s coveted national model for trauma care.

“The kind of partnership we have with our State Legislature and our Governor doesn’t exist anywhere else,” said Thomas Scalea, MD, Shock Trauma’s Physician-In-Chief, Chief for Critical Care Services at the University of Maryland Medical System and The Honorable Francis X. Kelly Distinguished Professor of Trauma Surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM).

“Over the last several months, our Shock Trauma leadership, team members and many survivors came together in an extraordinary way to inform legislators about the need,” continued Dr. Scalea. “In response, the Maryland General Assembly during a challenging fiscal year sought a path forward that would preserve our state’s unparalleled system for generations to come. The need was great, and our lawmakers once again stood up to say that saving lives is important to the people of Maryland.”

For Shock Trauma, Maryland’s only Primary Adult Resource Center, or PARC, the state’s highest level of trauma care (above Level I), the need for additional funding had reached a critical point. As support from MEMSOF remained relatively flat, the costs associated with meeting the renowned center’s state-mandated 24-7, on-demand state of readiness has gone up exponentially.

Shock Trauma treats 6,500 critically injured patients each year, among the highest volume for any trauma center in the United States. The center serves as the back stop for Maryland’s entire trauma system 30% of Shock Trauma’s patients are transferred from other hospitals, with 20% of those transfers coming from other state designated trauma centers. One of the biggest benefits of additional State funding is that the center will have an even greater ability to receive transfers and to maintain fully staffed operating rooms in response to patient need.

“We are extremely proud of our unparalleled capabilities and our ability to serve the citizens of Maryland as an innovator and role model for trauma systems throughout the U.S. and the world,” said Kristie Snedeker, DPT, Shock Trauma's Vice President. We want to express our gratitude to Speaker Jones, President Ferguson, Senator Guzzone, Del. Shetty and the entire General Assembly, for their support and tireless dedication to ensuring our world-class trauma care system is preserved for the future. This historical investment will save lives.”

In addition to continuing to offer an extraordinary level of dedicated, around-the-clock readiness to treat the most critically injured patients from every community across Maryland, Shock Trauma plans to expand its community outreach efforts significantly, broadening its injury prevention education initiatives, such as safe driving and fall prevention, and further expanding its free Stop the Bleed training with an ambitious goal of reaching every Marylander with these lifesaving skills. The center will also continue to bolster its trauma survivor support and wraparound services, working to ensuring seamless engagement with community resources post-discharge.

“I want to add my appreciation to our legislators, Gov. Moore and the citizens of Maryland,” said Bert W. O’Malley, MD, President and CEO of UMMC. “Thank you for standing up for all Marylanders and not taking the finest trauma care system in the world for granted. While no one ever expects to end up in Shock Trauma, we are all incredibly fortunate that it stands in 24-7 readiness for anyone in critical need. It is a privilege to be able to fulfill our lifesaving mission every day while educating the Trauma care physicians of the future.”

Added Mark T. Gladwin, MD, who is the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and Dean, UMSOM, and Vice President for Medical Affairs, University of Maryland, Baltimore: “This much needed increase in funding will enable our internationally-recognized trauma surgeons and team members to continue our vital, statewide mission, where we take on the most difficult and complex cases of blood loss and tissue crushing injury, with an unparalleled 96% survival rate. We are grateful to Governor Moore and the General Assembly for their support of a world-class trauma center that serves as a model around the world for trauma research, education, training and lifesaving patient care.”


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