The 2012 Annual Report of the National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB®) is an updated analysis of the largest aggregation of U.S. and Canadian trauma registry data ever assembled. In total, the NTDB now contains more than 5 million records. The 2012 is based on 773,299 records with valid trauma diagnoses that 744 facilities submitted for the single admission year of 2011. These facilities include 228 Level I trauma centers, 251 Level II trauma centers, and 210 Level III or IV trauma centers; 31 are Level I or Level II pediatric-only centers.
For the fourth year, the report contains an expanded section on facility information. This section includes the usual information on hospital characteristics, such as bed size and trauma level, as well as registry inclusion criteria for participating hospitals. A few of the inclusion criteria highlighted include minimum length of stay, hip fractures, and death on arrival. This information allows the reader to consider differences in case mix across hospitals while reading the report.
The mission of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Committee on Trauma (COT) is to develop and implement meaningful programs for trauma care. In keeping with this mission, the NTDB is committed to being the principal national registry for trauma center data. The purpose of this report is to inform the medical community, the public, and decision makers about a variety of issues that characterize the current state of care for injured persons in our country. It has implications in many areas, including epidemiology, injury control, research, education, acute care, and resource allocation.
Generating more meaningful data
Each year the requirements for data submission have become more stringent. This effort to improve the quality and reliability of the data started in earnest with the introduction of the National Trauma Data Standard (NTDS) in 2007, which was applied initially to the first single admission year Annual Report of 2008. Along with this effort to improve data quality over the past five years, the number of participating U.S. hospitals has increased more than 70 percent. In the 2008 Annual Report, the total number of participating facilities was 435. This year’s report includes 744 facilities (see figure).
Many dedicated individuals who serve on the ACS COT and at trauma centers throughout the nation have contributed to the early development of the NTDB and its rapid growth in recent years. Building on these achievements, the goals in the coming years include improving data quality, updating analytic methods, and developing means for users to make more meaningful hospital comparisons. The results of these efforts will be reflected in future NTDB reports for participating hospitals, as well as in the Annual Reports.
Throughout the year, we will be highlighting these data through brief reports in the Bulletin. The NTDB Annual Report 2012 is available on the ACS website as a PDF file and a PowerPoint presentation at www.ntdb.org. In addition, information regarding how to obtain other NTDB data for more detailed study is available on the website. If you are interested in submitting your trauma center’s data, contact Melanie L. Neal, Manager, NTDB, at email@example.com.