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The Trauma Nurse Coordinator in Australia and New Zealand: Demographics, Role, and Professional Development

Curtis, Kate RN, BN Care Grad Dip Crit, Ms Nurs (Hons), PhD; Leonard, Elizabeth RN, BN, MN (Crit Care) MN (NP)

doi: 10.1097/JTN.0b013e3182759a7d

Trauma nurse coordinators (TNCs) are essential to a successful trauma service. This study followed the 2003 Australian and 2007 binational TNC surveys and aimed to identify demographic information, common and differing role components, and professional development opportunities of TNCs. In September 2011, all TNCs in Australia and New Zealand were invited to participate in an electronic survey. Fifty-three surveys (78%) were completed. Compared with that of 2007, the median years of trauma-related nursing experience decreased from 11 to 6 (P < .0001), the proportion of respondents with specialist trauma qualifications increased from 78% to 96% (P = .037), and there was a significant increase in unpaid overtime (P = .023). Nearly all respondents (92%) had attended a conference within the past year; however, one-quarter of them (24.5%) attended on their own time and more than half (53.1%) received no financial assistance for at least one of the conferences they attended. Nearly half of the respondents (46.0%) reported leading research, and two-thirds (66.7%) reported contributing to research projects. Trauma centers should provide TNCs with adequate resources for daily practice, including professional development to prevent burnout, and facilitate effective trauma services.

Sydney Nursing School, University of Sydney (Dr Curtis and Ms Leonard); Trauma Service, St George Hospital, Kogarah (Dr Curtis), the George Institute for Global Health, Sydney (Dr Curtis), and Trauma Service, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Camperdown (Ms Leonard), New South Wales, Australia

Correspondence: Kate Curtis, RN, BN, Grad Dip Crit Care, Ms Nurs (Hons), PhD, St George Hospital, Gray St, Kogarah, New South Wales, Australia 2217 (

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

© 2012 Society of Trauma Nurses