4765.40 Written protocols for triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims.

(A)

(1) Not later than two years after November 3, 2000, the state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services shall adopt rules under section 4765.11 of the Revised Code establishing written protocols for the triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims. The rules shall define adult and pediatric trauma in a manner that is consistent with section 4765.01 of the Revised Code, minimizes overtriage and undertriage, and emphasizes the special needs of pediatric and geriatric trauma patients.

(2) The state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section shall require a trauma victim to be transported directly to an adult or pediatric trauma center that is qualified to provide appropriate adult or pediatric trauma care, unless one or more of the following exceptions applies:

(a) It is medically necessary to transport the victim to another hospital for initial assessment and stabilization before transfer to an adult or pediatric trauma center;

(b) It is unsafe or medically inappropriate to transport the victim directly to an adult or pediatric trauma center due to adverse weather or ground conditions or excessive transport time;

(c) Transporting the victim to an adult or pediatric trauma center would cause a shortage of local emergency medical service resources;

(d) No appropriate adult or pediatric trauma center is able to receive and provide adult or pediatric trauma care to the trauma victim without undue delay;

(e) Before transport of a patient begins, the patient requests to be taken to a particular hospital that is not a trauma center or, if the patient is less than eighteen years of age or is not able to communicate, such a request is made by an adult member of the patient's family or a legal representative of the patient.

(3)

(a) The state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section shall require trauma patients to be transported to an adult or pediatric trauma center that is able to provide appropriate adult or pediatric trauma care, but shall not require a trauma patient to be transported to a particular trauma center. The state triage protocols shall establish one or more procedures for evaluating whether an injury victim requires or would benefit from adult or pediatric trauma care, which procedures shall be applied by emergency medical service personnel based on the patient's medical needs. In developing state trauma triage protocols, the board shall consider relevant model triage rules and shall consult with the commission on minority health, regional directors, regional physician advisory boards, and appropriate medical, hospital, and emergency medical service organizations.

(b) Before the joint committee on agency rule review considers state triage protocols for trauma victims proposed by the state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services, or amendments thereto, the board shall send a copy of the proposal to the Ohio chapter of the American college of emergency physicians, the Ohio chapter of the American college of surgeons, the Ohio chapter of the American academy of pediatrics, OHA: the association for hospitals and health systems, the Ohio osteopathic association, and the association of Ohio children's hospitals and shall hold a public hearing at which it must consider the appropriateness of the protocols to minimize overtriage and undertriage of trauma victims.

(c) The board shall provide copies of the state triage protocols, and amendments to the protocols, to each emergency medical service organization, regional director, regional physician advisory board, certified emergency medical service instructor, and person who regularly provides medical direction to emergency medical service personnel in the state; to each medical service organization in other jurisdictions that regularly provide emergency medical services in this state; and to others upon request.

(B)

(1) The state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services shall approve regional protocols for the triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims, and amendments to such protocols, that are submitted to the board as provided in division (B)(2) of this section and provide a level of adult and pediatric trauma care comparable to the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section. The board shall not otherwise approve regional triage protocols for trauma victims. The board shall not approve regional triage protocols for regions that overlap and shall resolve any such disputes by apportioning the overlapping territory among appropriate regions in a manner that best serves the medical needs of the residents of that territory. The trauma committee of the board shall have reasonable opportunity to review and comment on regional triage protocols and amendments to such protocols before the board approves or disapproves them.

(2) Regional protocols for the triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims, and amendments to such protocols, shall be submitted in writing to the state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services by the regional physician advisory board or regional director, as appropriate, that serves a majority of the population in the region in which the protocols apply. Prior to submitting regional triage protocols, or an amendment to such protocols, to the state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services, a regional physician advisory board or regional director shall consult with each of the following that regularly serves the region in which the protocols apply:

(a) Other regional physician advisory boards and regional directors;

(b) Hospitals that operate an emergency facility;

(c) Adult and pediatric trauma centers;

(d) Professional societies of physicians who specialize in adult or pediatric emergency medicine or adult or pediatric trauma surgery;

(e) Professional societies of nurses who specialize in adult or pediatric emergency nursing or adult or pediatric trauma surgery;

(f) Professional associations or labor organizations of emergency medical service personnel;

(g) Emergency medical service organizations and medical directors of such organizations;

(h) Certified emergency medical service instructors.

(3) Regional protocols for the triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims approved under division (B)(2) of this section shall require patients to be transported to a trauma center that is able to provide an appropriate level of adult or pediatric trauma care; shall not discriminate among trauma centers for reasons not related to a patient's medical needs; shall seek to minimize undertriage and overtriage; may include any of the exceptions in division (A)(2) of this section; and supersede the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section in the region in which the regional protocols apply.

(4) Upon approval of regional protocols for the triage of adult and pediatric trauma victims under division (B)(2) of this section, or an amendment to such protocols, the state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services shall provide written notice of the approval and a copy of the protocols or amendment to each entity in the region in which the protocols apply to which the board is required to send a copy of the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section.

(C)

(1) The state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services shall review the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section at least every three years to determine if they are causing overtriage or undertriage of trauma patients, and shall modify them as necessary to minimize overtriage and undertriage.

(2) Each regional physician advisory board or regional director that has had regional triage protocols approved under division (B)(2) of this section shall review the protocols at least every three years to determine if they are causing overtriage or undertriage of trauma patients and shall submit an appropriate amendment to the state board, as provided in division (B) of this section, as necessary to minimize overtriage and undertriage. The state board shall approve the amendment if it will reduce overtriage or undertriage while complying with division (B) of this section, and shall not otherwise approve the amendment.

(D) No provider of emergency medical services or person who provides medical direction to emergency medical service personnel in this state shall fail to comply with the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section or applicable regional triage protocols approved under division (B)(2) of this section.

(E) The state board of emergency medical, fire, and transportation services shall adopt rules under section 4765.11 of the Revised Code that provide for enforcement of the state triage protocols adopted under division (A) of this section and regional triage protocols approved under division (B)(2) of this section, and for education regarding those protocols for emergency medical service organizations and personnel, regional directors and regional physician advisory boards, emergency medical service instructors, and persons who regularly provide medical direction to emergency medical service personnel in this state.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 11-03-2000