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Examining Disparities in Alcohol Use Testing On Burn Patient Admissions:A Call for Association Guidance.

Burn injuries are associated with as well as complicated by alcohol misuse. To date, there are no stated guidelines for alcohol testing upon burn patient admissions. This study investigated if there were associations between race and testing for alcohol upon burn admissions, controlling for demographics, burn severity (degree), and other circumstances associated with burn injuries. This study was a secondary analysis of 32,258 cases from the National Burn Data Repository. The dependent variable was whether a burn case was screened for alcohol use, and independent variables were age, gender, whether physical abuse was reported, mental health comorbidities, marital status, and the severity of burns, whether the injury was work-related, injury circumstances, and etiology of injury. Controlling for independent variables, race was associated with an increased probability of having been screened for alcohol use on admission to a burn center. Data reflecting alcohol screening/testing results reported in the NBR were not included in the analysis. Study results were consistent with the possibility of bias and may have influenced decisions to screen/test for alcohol misuse/abuse in reported burn cases. It is argued these findings support the recommendation that guidelines for alcohol testing of burn patients are warranted and would benefit from specific guidance from the American Burn Association.

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