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Record Number of Trauma Visits in Past 12 Months

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Nearly 1,100 patients visited Antelope Valley Medical Center’s (AVMC) trauma department in the last 12 months, according to records released today by the hospital. That volume marks a 31 percent increase from just two years ago and accentuates the hospital’s need for additional Measure B funding for which the hospital has filed suit against Los Angeles County and the County Board of Supervisors.

As the only Level II trauma center within a 50-mile radius, Antelope Valley Medical Center sees 12.4 percent of Los Angeles County trauma and emergency department (ED) visits and serves as a critical link in the county’s overall delivery of services to its neediest residents. AVMC’s emergency department is on pace to see more than 120,000 patients this year alone, making it the second busiest ED in L.A. County.

"AVMC provides an important link in the county’s overall delivery of services to its neediest residents," said Pavel Petrik, M.D., chair of the department of surgery and trauma medical director at AVMC. "We are so proud of the staff of trauma surgeons, neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, anesthesiologists, specially trained nurses, and radiologists who are on duty and/or on call 24/7/365 to provide care for people when they need it most."

In addition to the highly trained staff, AVMC’s dedicated trauma rooms in the ED and surgery department are equipped with state-of-the-art technology. Additionally, the hospital’s Blood Donor Center provides a comprehensive supply of blood to its trauma patients.

The hospital’s trauma surgeon monitors patients daily, oversees care, and consults with other healthcare providers helping the trauma patient to ensure the best quality, comprehensive recovery plans.

The pending lawsuit filed by the hospital against Los Angeles County and its Board of Supervisors is for failing to properly administer and allocate billions of dollars in property tax revenue per Measure B, passed by voters in 2002. The lawsuit seeks equitable relief, economic damages and other appropriate compensation on behalf of AVMC, which serves 5 percent of Los Angeles County’s population, yet receives less than one-half of 1 percent of all Measure B funds annually. In addition, under the current allocation, AVMC (and UCLA) funding inexplicably stops after approximately six months while the other hospitals receive funding for the entire year.

AVMC is currently being reimbursed slightly over $1 million per year. Using other non-county trauma hospitals as a benchmark, AVMC should be receiving at least $12 million a year in Measure B funds. If the county was to agree to an appropriate allocation of Measure B funds to AVMC, that sum would be less than three-tenths of 1 percent of the L.A. County Department of Health Services’ $3.8 billion budget but would be critical to keeping AVMC in good health.