Enhancing joint replacement outcomes through registry linkage with national health administrative and clinical registry data in Australia

There are almost 110,000 hip, knee and shoulder replacements undertaken each year. The incidence of these procedures has increased rapidly in recent years and that increase is expected to continue.

This study involves the analysis of a new and unique national dataset with the purpose of further enhancing the outcome of hip, knee and shoulder replacement surgery. It builds on the recognised success of the Australian Orthopaedic Association National Joint Replacement Registry (AOANJRR).

Although the AOANJRR has been very successful at improving the outcome of joint replacement surgery in this country it is currently only able to report on two outcomes: revision and mortality. There is a much wider range of complications that can occur, contributing to significant ongoing morbidity and cost.

This new data set of more than one million patients combines the entire AOANJRR data set (1999–2015) through case level linkage to MBS, PBS and state hospital databases. This data linkage enhances the capacity of the AOANJRR to report on an expanded range of outcomes.

The analysis of these data will be able to identify national, regional and hospital incidence trends and variations for a wide range of previously unreported complications. In addition, it is planned to identify the effects of patient, surgical, implant, surgeon, hospital, pharmacological and disease related factors on a range of specific local and systemic complications.

Understanding the relative importance and interaction of these factors and how the effects can be modified in patient populations is critically important to identifying and implementing best practice. In addition, this study will define and describe the use of rehabilitation, as well as the frequency of rehospitalisation and emergency room encounters post-surgery to more completely assess the extent of health resource utilisation associated with joint replacement surgery.


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