ORMC: $5 million anonymous donation to be used to expand trauma bay

Orlando Health is expanding its trauma center at the Orlando Regional Medical Center (ORMC)

Officials say that they want to be able to handle more patients during a mass casualty incident. They saw a need for this after the Pulse tragedy and can finally do it now because of a $5 million donation.

It is ORMC's largest-ever donation. The person who made it wants to stay anonymous. The hospital says they intend to use it for good use: better serving the community during a crisis. An upgrade to the hospital's trauma center is needed for that.

"We never thought in a million years we'd get a single donation to that amount," Dr. Joseph Ibrahim, the ORMC Trauma Medical Director, said. 

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Recalling that night tragic night five years ago, Dr. Ibrahim said that 44 victims were treated at the Level One Trauma Center that night. The first 36 of them arrived in 36 minutes. Typically, the trauma bay can only take six people at once.

"I quickly realized this was something much larger than what we had ever seen still not knowing the full magnitude of it," he said. 

ORMC's trauma bay is reportedly designed to handle about 1,000 patients a year. However, last year, the trauma team treated more than 6,000 people. The donated $5 million will be used to double the patients that staff can treat at once. They hope to be able to treat between 10 to 12 patients at once.

The hospital said that they are also investing in more technology and refrigerators to store blood in the emergency room.

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"You know, instruments and tools to help stop bleeding more quickly actually being able to bring the operating room to the trauma bay, which is what we're capable of doing now to bring," Dr. Ibrahim said.

He went on to explain that these expansions will extend to the emergency room and operating rooms and help with treating the sickest patients. That means, this will "allow us to take more efficiencies That means, hopefully, less waiting if you come in as an emergency patient."

ORMC said that they are already designing the plans for the expansion and hope to have everything finished in about two years.

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