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Admissions and costs to acute hospitals resulting from road traffic crashes, 2005-2009.Road traffic crashes (RTCs) remain a leading cause of death and injury. The aim of this study was to explore the use of hospital data as a source of RTC-related injury data in Ireland, as current systems are believed to under-estimate the burden. Information on inpatient discharges for years 2005-2009, admitted with RTC-related injuries were extracted from HIPE. There were 14,861 discharges; 9,661 (65.0%) were male, with an average age of 33 years. The median length of stay was two days. The most common diagnosis was head injury (n = 4,644; 31.2%). The average inpatient hospital cost was Euro 6,395 per discharge. 1,498 (10.1%) were admitted to intensive care units. This study has identified 3.5 times more serious injuries (14,861) than identified in the Road Safety Authority (RSA) statistics (4,263) indicating that the extent of road injuries is greater than previously estimated. Hospital data could be used annually in conjunction with RSA and other data; ideally the data should be linked.
The impact of legislation in Ireland on handheld mobile phone use by drivers.Under the Road Traffic Act, 2006 handheld mobile phone use whilst driving is an offence liable to a fine and penalty points. The aim of this study was to determine whether there has been a change in driver behaviour following the introduction of this legislation. This study found that 2.3% of drivers were still using a handheld mobile phone.