Quality statement 2: Image reporting

Quality statement

People who have had urgent 3D imaging for major trauma have a provisional written radiology report within 60 minutes of the scan.

Rationale

Obtaining the results of 3D imaging for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury as soon as possible allows for earlier diagnosis and decisions to be made on management, for example whether interventions such as surgery or interventional radiology are needed. Earlier treatment can reduce mortality and length of hospital stay, and improve health-related quality of life.

Quality measures

Structure

Evidence of local arrangements to ensure that provisional written radiology reports of urgent 3D imaging for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury are available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Data source: Local data collection, for example staff rotas.

Process

a) Proportion of urgent 3D images for chest trauma with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Numerator – the number in the denominator with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Denominator – the number of urgent 3D images for chest trauma.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, local audit of radiology reporting. The Trauma Audit and Research Network collects data on the timing of CT and when the CT report is issued.

b) Proportion of urgent 3D images for haemorrhage with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Numerator – the number in the denominator with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Denominator – the number of urgent 3D images for haemorrhage.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, local audit of radiology reporting. The Trauma Audit and Research Network collects data on the timing of CT and when the CT report is issued.

c) Proportion of urgent 3D images for spinal injury with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Numerator – the number in the denominator with a provisional written radiology report available within 60 minutes of the scan.

Denominator – the number of urgent 3D images for spinal injury.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, local audit of radiology reporting. The Trauma Audit and Research Network collects data on the timing of CT and when the CT report is issued.

Outcomes

a) Mortality rates from major trauma.

Data source: Local data collection, for example using the Office for National Statistics mortality database. The Trauma Audit and Research Network also collects data on deaths of trauma patients.

b) Length of hospital stay for people with major trauma.

Data source: Local data collection, for example using Hospital Episode Statistics data from NHS Digital. The Trauma Audit and Research Network also collects data on length of stay in hospital for trauma patients.

c) Health-related quality of life for people who have experienced major trauma.

Data source: Local data collection, for example patient surveys.

What the quality statement means for different audiences

Service providers (major trauma centres and trauma units) ensure that healthcare professionals trained in image reporting are available to interpret urgent 3D imaging for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury and deliver a provisional written radiology report within 60 minutes of the scan.

Healthcare professionals (radiologists, radiographers and other trained reporters) interpret urgent 3D imaging for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury and deliver a provisional written radiology report within 60 minutes of the scan.

Commissioners (clinical commissioning groups and NHS England) ensure that they commission services that have the capacity and expertise to interpret urgent 3D imaging for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury and deliver a provisional written radiology report within 60 minutes of the scan. They monitor contracts and seek evidence that service providers have this in place.

People who have had an urgent CT or MRI scan for a chest injury, serious bleeding or a spinal injury have the first result of their scan reported to their doctor in writing within 1 hour of having the scan.

Source guidance

Definitions of terms used in this quality statement

Urgent 3D imaging for major trauma

3D imaging that takes place immediately on arrival at hospital for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury. This includes CT for chest trauma, haemorrhage and spinal injury and MRI for spinal injury.

[NICE's guideline on major trauma: assessment and initial management, recommendations 1.4.5 and 1.5.31, and NICE's guideline on spinal injury: assessment and initial management, recommendations 1.5.2, 1.5.6, 1.5.7 and 1.5.10, and expert opinion]