This proof of concept project for national data linkage examines the healthcare use and mortality of injured people in Australia and quantifies the extent to which these outcomes were attributed to their injury. This is the first time that healthcare use pre- and post-injury has been quantified in Australia.
This is a retrospective matched cohort study of adults aged 18 years and older using linked national emergency department presentation, hospital admission, and mortality records for a 3-year period in four Australian states (New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania). A matched comparison cohort was drawn from Australian electoral rolls. An index injury admission was identified and health service use 1 year prior and health service use and mortality 1 year post the index injury admission identified. Healthcare use and mortality records were also identified for matched counterparts.
This research directly contributes to worldwide research efforts to understand how comorbidities (and which comorbidities) affect long-term disability following injury being conducted by the International Collaborative Effort on Injury Statistics, led by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention.