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Hospitals Pass Resolution Asking for Special Session on PIP

Jun 25, 2007

By The Bradenton Herald, Fla.

Jun. 26--TALLAHASSEE -- The Florida Hospital Association Board of Trustees is asking Gov. Charlie Crist to call a special session on no-fault automobile insurance before it expires on Oct.1.

More than four million Floridians have no other motor vehicle insurance coverage besides personal insurance protection and property damage liability, the resolution states.

Furthermore, 40 percent of all patients treated for motor vehicle crashes in Florida's hospital emergency rooms and trauma centers have no health insurance coverage to pay for necessary medical care other than PIP, the board said.

If action is not taken to renew the law, Florida could be the only state in the nation with no mandatory automobile insurance coverage, trustees warn.

"We believe Governor Crist understands the potential public health crisis the loss of PIP could have on our state, including the negative impact on trauma centers and the availability of physicians," said Jim Nathan, president of Lee Memorial Health System, Inc., and chair of the FHA Board of Trustees. "Virtually all of our state's newspaper editorial boards have clearly stated that PIP should not be allowed to sunset, leaving hospitals and the general public at great risk if involved in a motor vehicle crash," said Nathan. "It is essential that our state's elected leadership come to the same conclusion before Oct. 1,"

A membership survey conducted by FHA found that hospitals were reimbursed $350 million by auto insurance carriers in 2005.

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Copyright (c) 2007, The Bradenton Herald, Fla.

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