Linkage, Evaluation and Analysis of National Electronic Healthcare Data: Application to Providing Enhanced Blood-Stream Infection Surveillance in Paediatric Intensive Care

Harron K, Goldstein H, Wade A, Muller-Pebody B, Parslow R, Gilbert R.

Linkage of risk-factor data for blood-stream infection (BSI) in paediatric intensive care (PICU) with bacteraemia surveillance data to monitor risk-adjusted infection rates in PICU is complicated by a lack of unique identifiers and under-ascertainment in the national surveillance system. We linked, evaluated and performed preliminary analyses on these data to provide a practical guide on the steps required to handle linkage of such complex data sources.