Trauma burden, patient demographics and care-process in major hospitals in Tanzania: A needs assessment for improving healthcare resource management

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Trauma burden, patient demographics and care-process in major hospitals in Tanzania: A needs assessment for improving healthcare resource management


JournalAfrican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Publication date – Mar – 2020
Authors – Michael Mwandri, Timothy Craig Hardcastle, Hendry Sawe, Francis Sakita, Juma Mfinanga, Sarah Urassa, Alex Mremi, Lazaro Nelbert Mboma, Prosper Bashaka
Keywordsemergency, Global Health, Injuries, Prehospital, Quality of care., surgery
Open access – Yes
SpecialityEmergency surgery, Trauma surgery
World region Eastern Africa
Country: Tanzania
Language – English
Submitted to the One Surgery Index on May 29, 2020 at 12:30 pm
Abstract:

Background
Appropriate referrals of injured patients could improve clinical outcomes and management of healthcare resources. To gain insights for system development, we interrogated the current situation by assessing burden, patient demography, causes of injury, trauma mortality and the care-process.

Methods
We used an observational, cross-sectional study design and convenience sampling to review patient charts from 3 major hospitals and the death registry in Tanzania.

Results
Injury constitutes 9–13% of the Emergency Centre census. Inpatient trauma-deaths were 8%; however, the trauma death registry figures exceeded the ‘inpatient deaths’ and recorded up to 16%. Most patients arrive through a hospital referral system (82%) and use a hospital transport network (76%). Only 8% of the trauma admissions possessed National Health Insurance. Road traffic collision (RTC) (69%), assault (20%) and falls (9%) were the leading causes of injury. The care process revealed a normal primary-survey rate of 73–90%. Deficiencies in recording were in the assessment of: Airway and breathing (67%), circulation (40%) and disability (80%). Most patients had non-operative management (42–57%) or surgery for wound care or skeletal injuries (43%). Laparotomies were performed in 26%, while craniotomy and chest drain-insertion were each performed in 10%.

Conclusion
The burden of trauma is high, and the leading causes are: RTC, assault, and falls. Deaths recorded in the death registries outweigh in-hospital deaths for up to twofold. There are challenges in the care process, funding and recording. We found a functional hospital referral-network, transport system, and death registry.

OSI Number – 20444

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