Table 2

Details on the data sections of VAs used to define injury survivability and determine delays to care

DescriptionVA sections containing relevant dataVariables extracted
Injury survivabilityDemographicsAge.
Acuity of deathAcute versus chronic injury/death.
Medical historyList of medical conditions.
Signs and symptomsSystem-based list of signs and symptoms.
External injury classificationCategory of injury.
Trauma moduleDetails of injury classification and mechanism of injury.
Free-text disease descriptionsVitals at the scene.
Injured body system.
Signs and symptoms at the scene and at hospital presentation.
Injury severity.
Actions taken immediately after injury.
Ability to seek care.
First delayCircumstances of mortality questionsDoubts about the need for care.
Use of traditional medicine.
Did not use a mobile phone to call for help.
Free-text disease descriptionsHealthcare literacy and perceived severity of the injury.
Perceived costs of seeking care—transport, medical costs.
Perceived aetiology—trauma unwitnessed by caregivers or illness attributed to other known conditions.
Perceived quality of care.
Previous experiences with medical care.
Trauma moduleTraffic accident location, that is, rural versus urban.
Death at site or time of injury.
Second delayCircumstances of mortality questionsDid not use motorised transport to get to care.
>2 hours travel to care.
Prohibitive costs.
Did not travel to a hospital or health facility.
Free-text disease descriptionsEMS accessibility.
EMS timeliness of response.
EMS versus personal transport.
Prehospital care.
Third delayCircumstances of mortality questionsProblems with admission.
Problems with treatment (medical treatment, procedures, interpersonal attitudes, respect, dignity).
Problems with tests and medications.
Free-text disease descriptionsInadequate and/or delayed diagnosis and/or treatment.
Delayed interhospital transfers.
Poorly staffed and/or equipped facilities.
Treatment and healthcare utilisationMedical and/or surgical treatment.
Traditional medicine treatment.
If medical and traditional medicine treatment sought, which was sought first?
Medical aid or employer support for healthcare.
Medical actions.
If no medical actions taken, reasons for not taking medical action.
  • EMS, emergency medical services; VA, verbal autopsy.