A Method for Comparing Survival of Burn Patients to a Standard Survival Curve

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Abstract

A method is presented which enables individual institutions to compare their patient survival rates to a standard survival curve. The method can be used for survival following any sort of trauma, here illustrated for survival of burned patients. The only requirement is that a standard survival curve be available which gives predicted probabilities of survival for each patient. The procedure is simple and can be easily computed with a small calculator. It requires fewer patients than does a corresponding Chi-square test, and can be used with as few as 30 patients. The power for a specified alternative can be calculated. Detailed examples are given applying the procedure to a randomly selected set of 50 patients from the National Burn Information Exchange registry, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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