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Open Access Short Report

Towards a national trauma registry for the United Arab Emirates

Sami Shaban1*, Hani O Eid2, Ezedin Barka3 and Fikri M Abu-Zidan1

Author Affiliations

1 Trauma Group, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UAE University, Alain, UAE

2 Department of Emergency Medicine, Tawam Hospital, Alain, UAE

3 College of Information Technology, UAE University, Alain, UAE

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BMC Research Notes 2010, 3:187  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-3-187

Published: 10 July 2010



Trauma is a major health problem in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as well as worldwide. Trauma registries provide large longitudinal databases for analysis and policy improvement. We aim in this paper to report on the development and evolution of a national trauma registry using a staged approach by developing a single-center registry, a two-center registry, and then a multi-center registry. The three registries were established by developing suitable data collection forms, databases, and interfaces to these databases. The first two registries collected data for a finite period of time and the third is underway. The steps taken to establish these registries depend on whether the registry is intended as a single-center or multi-center registry.


Several issues arose and were resolved during the development of these registries such as the relational design of the database, whether to use a standalone database management system or a web-based system, and the usability and security of the system. The inclusion of preventive medicine data elements is important in a trauma registry and the focus on road traffic collision data elements is essential in a country such as the UAE. The first two registries provided valuable data which has been analyzed and published.


The main factors leading to the successful establishment of a multi-center trauma registry are the development of a concise data entry form, development of a user-friendly secure web-based database system, the availability of a computer and Internet connection in each data collection center, funded data entry personnel well trained in extracting medical data from the medical record and entering it into the computer, and experienced personnel in trauma injuries and data analysis to continuously maintain and analyze the registry.