Annual Report 2013: Where did they go?

The 2013 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. The NTDB now contains more than 5 million records. The 2013 Annual Report is based on 833,311 records with valid trauma diagnoses from the single admission year of 2012. The data were submitted by 805 facilities, including 235 Level I trauma centers, 267 Level II trauma centers, and 240 Level III or IV trauma centers; 33 are Level I or Level II pediatric-only centers.

Continuous quality improvements

Each year the requirements for data submission quality have increased. This data quality improvement effort started in earnest with the introduction of the National Trauma Data Standard (NTDS) in 2007, which was the basis of the first single admission year Annual Report of 2008. Along with this increase in data quality, over the past six years the number of records submitted by the nation’s hospitals has escalated more than 165 percent. In the 2008 Annual Report, the first using the NTDS, 506,452 records were submitted. This year’s report includes 833,311 records.

This year, to capture a better picture of deaths listed in the NTDB, any patients who have been recorded as “discharged to hospice” have been counted as deaths, which brings the total to 34,622 deaths. When taking a closer look at the emergency department disposition for all comers, the overwhelming majority are admitted to the general surgical floor (see the figure).

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 repository for trauma center registry data. The purpose of this report is to inform the medical community, the public, and decision makers about a wide 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.

Dedicated contributors

Many dedicated individuals who serve on the ACS COT and at trauma centers around the country 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 enabling more useful inter-hospital comparisons. These efforts will be reflected in future NTDB reports to 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 National Trauma Data Bank Annual Report 2013 is available on the ACS website as a PDF file and a PowerPoint presentation at In addition, information about how to obtain NTDB data for more detailed study is available on the website. To learn more about submitting your trauma center’s data, contact Melanie L. Neal, Manager, NTDB, at

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