Estimating the under-reporting of road crash injuries to police using multiple linked data collections

Watson, Angela, Watson, Barry C., & Vallmuur, Kirsten (2015) Estimating the under-reporting of road crash injuries to police using multiple linked data collections. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 83, pp. 18-25.

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Abstract

The reliance on police data for the counting of road crash injuries can be problematic, as it is well known that not all road crash injuries are reported to police which under-estimates the overall burden of road crash injuries. The aim of this study was to use multiple linked data sources to estimate the extent of under-reporting of road crash injuries to police in the Australian state of Queensland. Data from the Queensland Road Crash Database (QRCD), the Queensland Hospital Admitted Patients Data Collection (QHAPDC), Emergency Department Information System (EDIS), and the Queensland Injury Surveillance Unit (QISU) for the year 2009 were linked. The completeness of road crash cases reported to police was examined via discordance rates between the police data (QRCD) and the hospital data collections. In addition, the potential bias of this discordance (under-reporting) was assessed based on gender, age, road user group, and regional location. Results showed that the level of under-reporting varied depending on the data set with which the police data was compared. When all hospital data collections are examined together the estimated population of road crash injuries was approximately 28,000, with around two-thirds not linking to any record in the police data. The results also showed that the under-reporting was more likely for motorcyclists, cyclists, males, young people, and injuries occurring in Remote and Inner Regional areas. These results have important implications for road safety research and policy in terms of: prioritising funding and resources; targeting road safety interventions into areas of higher risk; and estimating the burden of road crash injuries.

Impact and interest:

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3 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 85873
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Road crash, Data linkage, Traffic injuries, Injury surveillance
DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2015.06.011
ISSN: 0001-4575
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700)
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 2015 Elsevier
Copyright Statement: Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution; Non-Commercial; No-Derivatives 4.0 International. DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2015.06.011
Deposited On: 20 Jul 2015 23:22
Last Modified: 26 Jul 2015 04:52

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