The medical and retrieval costs of road crashes in rural and remote northern Queensland, 2004–2007: findings from the Rural and Remote Road Safety Study

O'connor, Teresa M., Hanks, Heather A., Elcock, Mark S., Turner, Richard C., and Veitch, Craig (2009) The medical and retrieval costs of road crashes in rural and remote northern Queensland, 2004–2007: findings from the Rural and Remote Road Safety Study. Medical Journal of Australia, 190 (2). pp. 54-56.

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Abstract

Objective: To estimate costs of retrieval, transport and acute medical services associated with road crashes in northern Queensland from March 2004 to June 2007.

Design, setting and participants: Case study of 696 people aged 16 years or older who had been involved in a road crash in the study area (all areas north and west of Bowen, excluding the urban areas of Townsville and Cairns) and had been admitted to hospital for a minimum of 24 hours after the crash. Data on mode of retrieval, acute care provided and total costs were obtained for each patient.

Main outcome measures: Method of retrieval or transport; length of stay in intensive care unit (ICU) and/or hospital for each patient; costs of retrieval, transport and inhospital care.

Results: Retrieval data were collected for 614 of the 696 study participants (88%). Most primary retrievals (446; 73%) occurred by road. More than half of interhospital transfers were undertaken by fixed or rotary wing services. Casualties in the study occupied a total of 6360 bed-days, of which 734 were ICU bed-days. The total retrieval, transport and acute hospital care costs of road crash victims in northern Queensland over the study period were calculated to be approximately $10.4 million.

Conclusion: The costs associated with rural and remote road crashes in northern MJA 2009; 190: 54–56 Queensland represent a considerable economic burden.

Item ID: 5292
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
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ISSN: 1326-5377
Date Deposited: 22 Sep 2009 23:40
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920506 Rural Health @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920206 Health Policy Economic Outcomes @ 50%
Citation Count from Web of Science Web of Science 5
Downloads: Total: 5
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