Data from Emergency Departments (EDs) and Minor Injuries Units (MIUs)/Other are used for several purposes including:
- Monitoring the 4-hour wait standard
- Information is used to monitor and plan for Winter Pressures
- Identifying the times of the year where activity increases
- Providing evidence to improve patient care and support Scottish Government policy
The A&E data mart was established in June 2007 to monitor the compliance of each NHS Board against the 4 hour wait standard. As such, the focus was around a small number of fields such as arrival time, discharge time and reason for wait. Fields such as these are classed as mandatory items and each site must submit them. Many additional fields can also be submitted, and with the increased requirement for information on ED activity, NHS Boards are encouraged to submit as many as possible.
In July 2010 the A&E data mart was extended further to collect items such as diagnosis, several injury fields and an 'alcohol involved' flag, intended to be used to identify whether the patient's alcohol consumption was a factor in the attendance. The collection of the new fields has been driven by a variety of SG policy decisions and interest from a number of organisations including the Scottish College of Emergency Medicine, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA), the Violence Reduction Unit within Strathclyde Police, the Scottish Government (SG) and academia.