Can SNOMED CT as implemented in New South Wales, Australia be used for road trauma injury surveillance in emergency departments?

Mitchell, Rebecca J., Bambach, Mike R., Muscatello, David, McKenzie, Kirsten, & Balogh, Zsolt J. (2013) Can SNOMED CT as implemented in New South Wales, Australia be used for road trauma injury surveillance in emergency departments? Health Information Management Journal, 42(2), pp. 4-8.

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The introduction of Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine - Clinical Terms (Snomed CT) for diagnosis coding in emergency departments (EDs) in New South Wales (NSW) has implications for injury surveillance abilities. This study aimed to assess the consequences of its introduction, as implemented as part of the ED information system in NSW, for identifying road trauma-related injuries in EDs. It involved a retrospective analysis of road trauma-related injuries identified in linked police, ED and mortality records during March 2007 to December 2009. Between 53.7% to 78.4% of all Snomed CT classifications in the principal provisional diagnosis field referred to the type of injury or symptom experienced by the individual. Of the road users identified by police, 3.2% of vehicle occupants, 6% of motorcyclists, 10.0% of pedal cyclists and 5.2% of pedestrians were identified using Snomed CT classifications in the principal provisional diagnosis field. The introduction of Snomed CT may provide flexible terminologies for clinicians. However, unless carefully implemented in information systems, its flexibility can lead to mismatches between the intention and actual use of defined data fields. Choices available in Snomed CT to indicate either symptoms, diagnoses, or injury mechanisms need to be controlled and these three concepts need to be retained in separate data fields to ensure a clear distinction between their classification in the ED.

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ID Code: 67114
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: road trauma, injury surveillance, ED, Snomed CT
DOI: 10.12826/18333575.2013.0004.Mitchell
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 > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Please consult the authors
Deposited On: 10 Feb 2014 22:34
Last Modified: 12 Feb 2014 14:24

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