Toward an all-inclusive trauma system in Central South Ontario: development of the Trauma- System Performance Improvement and Knowledge Exchange (T-SPIKE) project
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BACKGROUND: There is currently no integrated data system to capture the true burden of injury and its management within Ontario's regional trauma networks (RTNs), largely owing to difficulties in identifying these patients across the multiple health care provider records. Our project represents an iterative effort to create the ability to chart the course of care for all injured patients within the Central South RTN. METHODS: Through broad stakeholder engagement of major health care provider organizations within the Central South RTN, we obtained research ethics board approval and established data-sharing agreements with multiple agencies. We tested identification of trauma cases from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017, and methods to link patient records between the various echelons of care to identify barriers to linkage and opportunities for administrative solutions. RESULTS: During 2017, potential trauma cases were identified within ground paramedic services (23 107 records), air medical transport services (196 records), referring hospitals (7194 records) and the lead trauma hospital trauma registry (1134 records). Linkage rates for medical records between services ranged from 49% to 92%. CONCLUSION: We successfully conceptualized and provided a preliminary demonstration of an initiative to collect, collate and accurately link primary data from acute trauma care providers for certain patients injured within the Central South RTN. Administration-level changes to the capture and management of trauma data represent the greatest opportunity for improvement.
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