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Air Med J. 2013 Jan-Feb;32(1):30-5. doi: 10.1016/j.amj.2012.11.001.

A blueprint for critical care transport research.

Author information

  • 1The Center for Medical Transport Research, Columbus, OH 43235-2712, USA. cathy.jaynes@tcmtr.org



An estimated 500,000 critical care patient transports occur annually in the United States. Little research exists to inform optimal practices, promote safety, or encourage responsible, cost-effective use of this resource. Previous efforts to develop a research agenda have not yielded significant progress in producing much-needed scientific study.


Identify and characterize areas of research needed to direct the development of evidence-based guidelines


The study used a modified Delphi technique to develop a concept map of the research domains in critical care transport. Proprietary, internet-based software was used for both data collection and analysis. The study was conducted in 3 phases: brainstorming, categorizing, and prioritizing, using experts from all aspects of critical care transport.


A total of 101 research questions were developed and ranked by 27 participants representing the transport community and stakeholders. An 8-cluster solution was developed with multidimensional scaling and hierarchical cluster analysis to identify the following research areas: clinical care, education/training, finance, human factors, patient outcomes, safety, team configuration, and utilization. A plot characterized each domain by urgency and feasibility.


The content and concepts represented by the cluster map can help direct research planning in the critical care transport industry and prioritize funding decisions.

Copyright © 2013 Air Medical Journal Associates. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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