Motor Vehicle Crash & Outcomes

With funds provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Bureau of Health hacdd has linked statewide motor vehicle crash records to Patient Abstract System (PAS) files of hospital inpatient and emergency room visit records. The 1996 motor vehicle crash file was linked to the 1996 Emergency Medical System (EMS) ambulance trip file and the (PAS) file. Since then, motor vehicle crash files have been linked to the PAS files but not EMS. In 2003, mortality data were added to the linkage.

The purpose for linking these files is to be able to relate motor vehicle crash characteristics (such as seat belt use) to the severity, type, likelihood and costs of injuries. Identifying an individual’s record in each of the above files makes this type of research possible. Because persons and events are not coded perfectly on the individual files, identifying a person’s records across files and linking them together into one file is very difficult. To link the data, special software provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was used. This software links records based on the probability that records with similar values on common variables represent the same person. Even using this software, file linking is an intensive and time-consuming task.

The linked files are comprised of many data items. The data items contained in the Patient Abstract System are listed at Data Elements. Because the motor vehicle crash file data items are too numerous to be listed in their entirety, only the most frequently used data items are listed on this website. More complete documentation can be obtained by contacting us.