Pre- and inter-hospital transport of severely head-injured patients in rural Northern Norway

Snorre Sollid*, Jens Munch-Ellingsen, Mads Gilbert, Tor Ingebrigtsen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to survey the time consumed during the pre- and inter-hospital transport of severely head injured patients in Northern Norway. All patients (n = 85) operated for an intracranial mass lesions within 48 h after injury during the 10-year period 1986-1995 were included in this retrospective analysis. Ambulance records, transfer notes, and hospital records were reviewed. The transport of patients was classified as either direct from the trauma scene to the University Hospital (direct admission group) or as an inter-hospital transfer (transfer group). Forty-seven (55%) patients were in the direct admission group, and 38 (45%) were transferred through another hospital. The majority of patients (81%) were transported by air ambulance. Median time from injury to arrival in the emergency room was 5 (1-44) h. Time necessary for transport was significantly (p < 0.001) shorter in the direct admission group (median 3 h) compared to the transfer group (median 8 h). The inter-hospital transfer time was ≤3 h in 17%. Clearly, the advanced air ambulance service in Northern Norway makes rapid inter-hospital transfer possible despite extremely long geographical distances. Our findings indicate that this possibility is not always utilized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)309-314
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neurotrauma
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Air ambulance
  • Head injury
  • Patient transfer
  • Rural area
  • Time consumption


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