Are local hospitals prepared in case of a mass shooting?

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FORT MYERS, Fla.- Doctors at the Orlando Regional Medical Center described shooting victims being taken to the hospital by the “truckloads” following Sunday’s massacre.

In the case of a similar incident taking place in Southwest Florida, local hospitals regularly prepare for the worst.

“We have to be ready for anything and everything that comes through the emergency department,” said Dr. Timothy Dougherty with Lee Memorial Health System.

Connie Bowles, emergency management coordinator for Lee Memorial adds “every year we have a mass casualty incident exercise.”

Lee Memorial facilities regularly go through full-scale, mass casualty training drills where it’s all hands on deck.

“We are not going to have the same set-up, we are not going to have the same type of equipment, we are not going to have the same amount of people that Orlando Regional has,” Dougherty said.

Although local facilities operate on a smaller scale, doctors say they’re ready if terror were to strike in the area.

“There’s no good reason why these things happen. As an emergency physician, our role is not to question why it happened but to treat the patients when they show up in the emergency department,” Dougherty added.

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