INTRODUCTION: Correct estimation of the severity of burns is important to obtain the right treatment of the patient and to avoid over- and undertriage. In this study we aimed to assess how often the guidelines for referral of burn injured patients are met at the national burn centre (NBC), Denmark. METHODS: We included burn patients referred to the NBC in a three-months period. Patient records were systematically analyzed and compared with the national guidelines for referral of burn injured patients. RESULTS: A total of 97 burn injured patients were transferred for treatment at the NBC and the most common reason for referral was partial thickness burn exceeding 3% estimated area of burn (55% of the patients) while facial burns (32%) and inhalational injury (25%) were other common reasons. We found that 29 (30%) of the referrals were considered potentially unnecessary according to the guidelines. The overtriage was highest among patients suffering of burns due to scalding and these were mostly children below 2 years of age. CONCLUSION: An overtriage of referred burn injured patient was found and 30% of the referred patients were treated as outpatients. A telemedicine solution may be useful in the evaluation of burn injured patients before transfer.
Burns, 2014, Vol 40, Issue 3, p. 397-401
Adolescent; Adult; Aged; Burn Units; Burns; Burns, Electric; Child; Child, Preschool; Cohort Studies; Denmark; Facial Injuries; Female; Guideline Adherence; Humans; Infant; Male; Middle Aged; Practice Guidelines as Topic; Referral and Consultation; Retrospective Studies; Severity of Illness Index; Smoke Inhalation Injury; Telemedicine; Triage; Young Adult