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Burns. 2006 Dec;32(8):940-5. Epub 2006 Sep 29.

An outcome analysis of patients transferred to a regional burn center: transfer status does not impact survival.

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  • 1Burn Center, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, WA 98121, USA.



Optimal burn care is provided at specialized burn centers. Given the geographic location of these centers, many burn patients receive initial treatment at local emergency departments prior to transfer. The purpose of this study was to determine whether patients transferred from other facilities have worse outcomes than those admitted directly from the field.


A retrospective cohort study was performed comparing the outcomes of patients admitted to our burn center directly from the field with patients requiring transfer from a preliminary care facility. The outcomes of interest were mortality, length of stay, length of stay/TBSA burned, number of operations and hospital charges. Poisson regression or Cox proportional hazards model was used to evaluate differences in outcomes after adjusting for potential confounders.


From 2000 to 2003 a total of 1877 patients were admitted to our burn center and 953 (51%) were transferred from a preliminary care facility. No difference (p<0.05) was found in length of stay, number of operations, hospital charges and mortality between the two cohorts.


This study demonstrates that patients transferred to a regional burn center from local hospitals have equivalent mortality, length of stay and hospital charges as those admitted directly from the field.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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