Skip to main content

UHCW in research partnership that could hand life-saving treatment for pedestrian casualties


Groundbreaking research could provide potentially life-saving assistance when treating people hurt in road accidents.


A Forensic Pedestrian Trauma Database (FPTD) is being developed by University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust in conjunction with Dr Christophe Bastien and colleagues at Coventry University’s Centre for Future Transport and Cities, following funding from The Road Safety Trust.


Virtual CT scans of the body can inform paramedics in seconds about the victim’s potential internal injuries per organ, enabling correct treatment at the scene. The information can also be sent to a hospital, thus speeding up the triage and improving the treatment upon arrival at Accident and Emergency units.


Professor Joseph Hardwicke, Consultant Plastic Surgeon and Research Lead for the UHCW Major Trauma Centre, said: “This innovative approach to the assessment of pedestrian trauma victims will aim to put many lifetimes’ worth of experience in the palm of the hand of the first attender. In the future this can only mean better outcomes for our patients.”


Dr Bastien, Associate Professor (Academic), added: “We’re optimistic about the potential of such crucial assistance to help paramedics save the lives and improve the treatment of pedestrians who have been involved in traffic collisions and incidents.


“In the long term, we’re very hopeful that we can develop our detailed framework into something that can be rolled out within the NHS and to health care services around the world.


“Our next step is to secure funding to continue the development of the FPTD. Our research brings huge interest from hospitals, ambulance services, transport forensics and the police.”  


Gary Gilkes has worked in the ambulance service for the last 10 years as a paramedic as well as lecturing at universities across the country. He’s attended multiple serious incidents and also works to help implement new ideas within the NHS and the ambulance service.


He said: “Pedestrian trauma injuries can be very emotional and human factors can slow down the process of triage, so having a way to speed up this process and minimise these human factors would undoubtedly improve patient outcomes and save lives.


“It’s unquestionable that speed in terms of the speed of getting patients into hospitals and starting treatment saves lives – the quicker we can do that the better chance the patient has.”


Sally Lines, CEO of The Road Safety Trust, said: “The findings from the research that Coventry University has conducted have the potential to assist the UK Police Force and Accident and Emergency departments with road traffic collision insight.  As a charity dedicated to achieving zero road deaths and serious injuries on UK roads through our grants, we are excited by the fact that this research could help save lives in the future.” 


The virtual CT scans have been developed and validated using the Total Human Model for Safety (THUMS) which has been devised by the Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Central R&D Labs.

Share this story

Latest stories