Electronic longitudinal alcohol study in communities (ELAStiC) Wales - protocol for platform development

L. Trefan, A. Akbari, S. Paranjothy, D. M. Farewell, A. Gartner, D. Fone, G. J. Greene, A. Evans, A. Smith, V. Adekanmbi, J. Kennedy, R. A. Lyons, S. C. Moore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Excessive alcohol consumption has adverse effects on health and there is a recognised need for the longitudinal analysis of population data to improve our understanding of the patterns of alcohol use, harms to consumers and those in their immediate environment. The UK has a number of linkable, longitudinal databases that if assembled properly could support valuable research on this topic. Aims and Objectives This paper describes the development of a broad set of cross-linked cohorts, e-cohorts, surveys and linked electronic healthcare records (EHRs) to construct an alcohol-specific analytical platform in the United Kingdom using datasets on the population of Wales. The objective of this paper is to provide a description of existing key datasets integrated with existing, routinely collected electronic health data on a secure platform, and relevant derived variables to enable population-based research on alcohol-related harm in Wales. We illustrate our use of these data with some exemplar research questions that are currently under investigation. Methods: Record-linkage of routine and observational datasets. Routine data includes hospital admissions, general practice, and cohorts specific to children. Two observational studies were included. Routine socioeconomic descriptors and mortality data were also linked. Conclusion: We described a record-linked, population-based research protocol for alcohol related harm on a secure platform. As the datasets used here are available in many countries, ELAStiC provides a template for setting up similar initiatives in other countries. We have also defined a number of alcohol specific variables using routinely-collected available data that can be used in other epidemiological studies into alcohol related outcomes. With over 10 years of longitudinal data, it will help to understand alcohol-related disease and health trajectories across the lifespan.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number581
JournalInternational Journal of Population Data Science
Volume4
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 21 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Information Systems
  • Health Informatics
  • Information Systems and Management

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