Atlanta faced with having only one level one trauma center after AMC closure

Published: Sep. 1, 2022 at 11:14 AM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) - No one wants to find themselves needing a level one trauma center but when you do, you want it to be nearby.

Atlanta’s population is approximately 5 million and after Nov. 1, we will have only one trauma center in the metro Atlanta area after Wellstar’s Atlanta Medical Center in downtown Atlanta closes.

That is far less than cities with similar populations.

Houston’s population is slightly above 5 million and they have a total of three trauma centers. Two are for adults and one is for children. All three are located within city limits.

In Philadelphia, which has almost 6 million residents, they have 6 total trauma units -- 4 for adults and two pediatric units -- St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

The other level one trauma center is located at Grady Hospital, which often operates at capacity and diverts possible patients.

The next closest trauma center is not really close at all.

It’s either a two-hour drive east to Augusta or an hour and a half drive to Macon to the south.

Or, a two-and-a-half-hour drive to Birmingham to the west and an hour and forty-five-minute drive to Chattanooga to the north of Atlanta.

This could be very bad news if there is a mass casualty incident such as a mass shooting, a serious fire or a mass pileup on an interstate.

Atlanta is now scrambling for solutions with just 62 days until Atlanta Medical Center closes its doors.

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