Air Transportation In Pediatric Trauma Remains An Over-utilized Resource
*Pam Choi, Charlene Dekonenko, *Pablo Aguayo, *David Juang
Children's Mercy Hospital, KANSAS CITY, MO
Background (issue): Air transportation can be life-saving but is also costly and carries risk for air-crew and patients.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of all pediatric patients who utilized air transportation prior to presentation to our institution between 2013-2018. We did a subgroup analysis on those who traveled <100 miles and those who traveled >100 miles.
Findings: 382 patients utilized air transport (Figure 1). 198 (51.8%) were discharged within 48 hours, 133 (34.8%) were discharged within 24 hours, and 37 (9.7%) were discharged home directly from the ED. Patients who were taken directly to our institution from scene were older than those who were transferred from an OSH (10.6 vs 6.6 years, p <0.05), but there were no differences in ICU admission, length of stay(LOS), and discharge rates within 48/24 hours or from the ED. Among patients who were transferred to our institution from OSH by air, the average distance traveled was 112.2 miles. . In our subgroup analysis, there were no differences in age, ICU admission, or LOS. Patients who traveled <100 miles had higher rates of discharge within 48 hours (64.8% vs 46.4%, p <0.05) and within 24 hours (49.5% vs 30.9%, p<0.05).
Conclusions (implications for practice): High rates of discharge within 24 and 48 hours suggest that air transportation is over-utilized. Stable patients transferred from within 100 miles should especially be considered for ground transportation.
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