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Authors Liepert AE, Bledsoe J, Stevens MH, Cochran A
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Journal Am. J. Surg. Volume: 208 Issue: 4 Pages: 511-6
Publish Date 2014 Oct
PubMed ID 25152252

Duplicated computed tomography (CT) scans in transferred trauma patients have been described in university-based trauma systems. This study compares CT utilization between a university-based nonintegrated system (NIS) and a vertically integrated regional healthcare system (IS).Trauma patients transferred to 2 Level I trauma centers were prospectively identified at the time of transfer. Imaging obtained before and subsequent to transfer and the reason for CT imaging at the Level I center were captured by real-time reporting.Four hundred eighty-one patients were reviewed (207 at NIS and 274 at IS). Ninety-nine patients (48%) at NIS and 45 (16%) at IS underwent duplicate scanning of at least one body region. Inadequate scan quality and incomplete imaging were the most common reason category reported at NIS (54%) and IS (78%).Fewer patients received duplicated scans within the vertically IS as compared with a traditional university-based referral system. Our findings suggest that the adoption of features of a vertically IS, particularly improved transferability of radiographic studies, may improve patient care in other system types. Copyright © 2016 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System