TAMPA, Fla. — Dozens of Tampa General Hospital patients and family advocates are traveling to Tallahassee to share their stories with lawmakers.

Nurses and doctors waved pom poms as more than 80 former TGH patients boarded buses, on their way to meet legislators at the State Capitol to talk about the importance of healthcare.

One of them was former UT student Vincent Lanci.

“It’s an honor to be here and I’d love to share my story because of how well they did in bringing me back to life and repairing me. I’m so thankful to them,” he said.

He was the victim of a hit and run near the campus in 2013 that nearly left him dead.

“I was supposed to never walk again, or talk, and I was able to find it in me to write a book about it. And I’m so thankful for what they’ve given me,” he shared.

He’s now an advocate for TGH’s services and plans on sharing his story during ‘We Are TGH’ Day at the capitol.

The goal: to engage in a thoughtful and meaningful discussion on healthcare policy as lawmakers decide the future of Florida’s healthcare system.

“It’s an opportunity for that to happen through the eyes of the patients who are ultimately the biggest stakeholders in all of the change that’s happening in healthcare,” said TGH CEO John Couris.

And it's not just about healthcare policy, though that’s expected to be a hot topic.

It’s also about continuing to support patient care that, according to those like Lanci, ultimately brings major healing.

“I think mental health is the biggest thing. If they help you remain positive and they show you that there is a brighter day ahead of you, I mean it pays major dividends just the little things go a long way when there’s not much to be happy about,” he said.