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Proc (Bayl Univ Med Cent). 2013 Jul;26(3):256-61.

Frequency of adoption of practice management guidelines at trauma centers.

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Baylor Institute for Health Care Research and Improvement, Dallas, Texas (Sobrino, Barnes, Dahr, Kudyakov, Berryman, Shafi); the Division of General Surgery, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (Nathens); the Section of General Surgery, Trauma Burn Research Laboratory, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan (Hemmila); and the Committee on Trauma, American College of Surgeons, Chicago, Illinois (Neal). Ms. Dahr is now affiliated with Integris Health, Oklahoma City.


Evidence-based management guidelines have been shown to improve patient outcomes, yet their utilization by trauma centers remains unknown. This study measured adoption of practice management guidelines or protocols by trauma centers. A survey of 228 trauma centers was conducted over 1 year; 55 completed the survey. Centers were classified into three groups: noncompliant, partially compliant, and compliant with adoption of management protocols. Characteristics of compliant centers were compared with those of the other two groups. Most centers were Level I (58%) not-for-profit (67%) teaching hospitals (84%) with a surgical residency (74%). One-third of centers had an accredited fellowship in surgical critical care (37%). Only one center was compliant with all 32 management protocols. Half of the centers were compliant with 14 of 32 protocols studied (range, 4 to 32). Of the 21 trauma center characteristics studied, only two were independently associated with compliant centers: use of physician extenders and daily attending rounds (both P < .0001). Adoption of management guidelines by trauma centers is inconsistent, with wide variations in practices across centers.

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