Centers for Disease Control and Prevention logo
 link to CDC Home link to search page link to Health Topics A-Z  
mass trauma preparedness and response--cdc's injury center  
Emergency Home  l  Injury Home  l  Mass Trauma Home  l  Contact Us  


Mass Trauma > Research > Possible Research Studies > Example Medical/Clinical Study
If this page does not refresh click here.

Medical/Clinical Study 

Rapid Assessment of Fatal and Nonfatal Injuries Among Immediate Victims

Goals: To quickly provide valid numbers of injuries and deaths and other information needed to quell rumors and to allocate resources appropriately.

Who would use the data? Medical and public health professionals, and other community policymakers and planners who must prepare for future mass trauma events.

Example: Boodran B, Torian L, Thomas P, Wilt S, Pollock D, Bell M, Budnitz D. Rapid assessment of injuries among survivors of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center - New York City. MMWR. 2002; 51(01): 1-5.

Research questions:

  • What were the leading types of all nonfatal injuries, serious non-fatal injuries, and fatal injuries? What were the numbers, percentage distributions, and rates of those injuries? 
  • What were the characteristics of the injured persons (e.g., age, gender, race/ethnicity,occupation)?
  • What was the cause of the fatal or non-fatal injury?
  • How many injured persons were treated and released, hospitalized, transferred to other facilities, died?
  • What treatments were administered?
  • How did the victims get to the Emergency Department (ED)? 


  • Target population: Victims directly impacted by the event who sought treatment at the ED or died
  • Study design: Cross-sectional medical record abstraction
  • Sampling plan: Collect data on all victims, or sample as needed

Data sources:

  • Primary data source: ED records, medical examiner (ME) data 
  • Secondary data source: Red Cross, disaster medical assistance teams (DMAT)

Sample variables: Age, race/ethnicity, sex, injury type, fatal or non-fatal, cause of injury, time lapse between injury and treatment, source/location of care, treatment, hospitalized or released, mode of arrival at treatment facility.

Instrument: See Instrument for Rapid Assessment of Injuries and Other Medical Conditions.

Time frame for initiating study: Immediate (<24 hours) or as soon as possible during first week after event.

Potential partners/collaborators:

  • State and local health departments
  • Local university researchers, especially schools of public health
  • CDC, NCIPC staff
  • Red Cross 

IRB needed: No, this is public health practice. 

Page content last revised 2/18/03.

CDC Public Health Emergency Home   l   CDC Injury Home   l   Mass Trauma  l   Contact Us

CDC Home | CDC Search | Health Topics A-Z

Privacy Notice - Accessibility

This page last reviewed 08/04/04.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center for Injury Prevention and Control