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Report condemns English trauma care
A report from the National Audit Office claims that between 450 and 600 lives could be saved each year in England if care for patients with major injuries was managed more efficiently and effectively. Compared with the USA, the study identified a 20% higher in-hospital mortality rate for trauma patients in England. Trauma in England costs the NHS between £0.3bn and £0.4bn a year. The study also found that trauma care was at its worst on weekends and at night when, typically, there is less consultant presence in the hospital (BMJ 2010;340:c766).
Antibiotics for burns
A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials analysed inpatients with burns and compared antibiotic prophylaxis with placebo or no treatment. Of the 17 studies included, trials that used prophylaxis for 4–14 days after admission showed a significant reduction in all-cause mortality compared with trials using perioperative antibiotics alone. However, because of methodological concerns with many of the trials, there is plenty of food for thought but still …