Introduction Quality improvement programmes are an important part of care delivery in trauma centres. The objective was to describe the effect of a comprehensive quality improvement programme on long term patient outcome trends at a low volume major trauma centre in Australia. Methods All patients aged 15 years and over with major trauma (Injury Severity Score > 15) admitted to a single inner city major trauma centre between 1992 and 2012 were studied. The outcomes of interest were in-hospital mortality and transfer to rehabilitation. Time series analysis using integer valued autoregressive Poisson models was used to determine the reduction in adjusted monthly count data associated with the intervention period (2007-2012). Risk adjusted odds ratios for mortality over three yearly intervals was also obtained using multivariable logistic regression. Crude and risk adjusted mortality was compared before and after the implementation period. Results 3856 patients were analysed. Crude in-hospital mortality fell from 16% to 10% after implementation (p < 0.001). The intervention period was associated with a 25% decrease in monthly mortality counts. Risk adjusted mortality remained stable from 1992 to 2006 and did not fall until the intervention period. Crude and risk adjusted transfer to in-patient rehabilitation after major trauma also declined during the intervention period. Conclusion In this low volume major trauma centre, the implementation of a comprehensive quality improvement programme was associated with a reduction in crude and risk adjusted mortality and risk adjusted discharge to rehabilitation in severely injured patients.
- Quality improvement