The Geography of Trauma in Nova Scotia
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Injury is a leading contributor to Canada's disease burden, accounting for over 15.000 deaths annually. Patients who receive care in designated trauma centres (TCs) have been shown to have a lower risk of trauma-related mortality, but these centres may not be accessible to large subsets of the population. This thesis uses geospatial and epidemiological methods with trauma registry data to assess the regional variation in trauma-related mortality in Nova Scotia and quantify the relationship between TC accessibility and trauma-related mortality. These analyses successfully identified clusters of high mortality risk and prolonged intensive care unit length of stay in the province. Additionally, poor access to TCs was found to be associated with an increased mortality risk for victims of motor vehicle collisions and penetrating injuries. Understanding the spatial variations in injury-related outcome can ultimately be used to inform trauma system organization and improve injury-related outcomes in Nova Scotia.