Correlates of undefined cause of injury coded mortality data in Australia

McKenzie, Kirsten, Chen, Linping, & Walker, Sue M. (2009) Correlates of undefined cause of injury coded mortality data in Australia. Health Information Management Journal, 38(1), pp. 8-14.

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The objective of this research was to identify the level of detail regarding the external causes of death in Australia and ascertain problematic areas where data quality improvement efforts may be focused. The 2003 national mortality dataset of 12591 deaths with an external cause of injury as the underlying cause of death (UCOD) or multiple cause of death (MCOD) based on ICD-10 code assignment from death certificate information was obtained. Logistic regression models were used to examine the precision of coded external cause of injury data.----

It was found that overall, accidents were the most poorly defined of all intent code blocks with over 30% of accidents being undefined, representing 2314 deaths in 2003. More undefined codes were identified in MCOD data than for UCOD data. Deaths certified by doctors were more likely to use undefined codes than deaths certified by a coroner or government medical office.----

To improve the quality of external cause of injuries leading to or associated with death, certifiers need to be made aware of the importance of documenting all information pertaining to the cause of the injury and the intent behind the incident, either through education or more explicit instructions on the death certificate and accompanying instructional materials. It is important that researchers are aware of the validity of the data when they make interpretations as to the underlying causes of fatal injuries and causes of injury associated with deaths.

Impact and interest:

7 citations in Scopus
7 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 20119
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Mortality, Injury, ICD-10, Statistical Data Analysis, Death Certificates
ISSN: 1833-3583
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Health Information Systems (incl. Surveillance) (111711)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Research Centres > National Centre for Health Information Research & Training
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 Health Information Management Association of Australia Ltd
Deposited On: 28 Apr 2009 03:47
Last Modified: 18 Apr 2017 13:35

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