The effect of burn center volume on mortality has been demonstrated in adults. The authors sought to evaluate whether such a relationship existed in burned children. The National Burn Repository, a voluntary registry sponsored by the American Burn Association, was queried for all data points on patients aged 18 years or less and treated from 2002 to 2011. Facilities were divided into quartiles based on average annual burn volume. Demographics and clinical characteristics were compared across groups, and univariate and multivariate logistic regressions were performed to evaluate relationships between facility volume, patient characteristics, and mortality. The authors analyzed 38,234 patients admitted to 88 unique facilities. Children under age 4 years or with larger burns were more likely to be managed at high-volume and very high-volume centers (57.12 and 53.41%, respectively). Overall mortality was low (0.85%). Comparing mortality across quartiles demonstrated improved unadjusted mortality rates at the low-and high-volume centers compared with the medium-volume and very high-volume centers although univariate logistic regression did not find a significant relationship. However, multivariate analysis identified burn center volume as a significant predictor of decreased mortality after controlling for patient characteristics including age, mechanism of injury, burn size, and presence of inhalation injury. Mortality among pediatric burn patients is low and was primarily related to patient and injury characteristics, such as burn size, inhalation injury, and burn cause. Average annual admission rate had a significant but small effect on mortality when injury characteristics were considered.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine