Court rules against new trauma centers

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida appeals court is siding again with non-profit hospitals that have challenged trauma centers that were approved by state regulators.

The Department of Health tried to prevent non-profit hospitals from challenging licenses issued for trauma centers in Clay County, Pasco County and Manatee County. The department argued that hospitals in urban centers challenging the centers located in outlying communities lacked standing to bring a challenge.

But the 1ST District Court of Appeal ruled Thursday that the department was wrong because the non-profit hospitals have economic interests that are affected by the trauma centers.

This is yet another ruling in what has been a long-running fight.

The same appeals court last November ruled that the rule that had authorized the trauma centers to begin with was outdated and invalid.

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