Friday, January 22, 2010

Safety is Foremost and Don’t Use the Word Accident

This is the third in a series of 3 posts on Child Safety

Post 1: Better Safe than here
Post 2: Dr. Singer, Practice what you here

A recent report by the Center for Disease Control concerning childhood injury provides some very useful information. In a Washington Post article, titled “How Kids Get Hurt” author David Brown states, “Around the world, fatal injuries in children total 830,000 a year, a number equal to roughly all the children in Chicago. That’s 2270 a day, of which at least 1000 could have been prevented, experts say.”

Brown interviewed Julie Gilchrist, a physician and epidemiologist at CDC, and one of the authors of the report. Brown explains, “You won’t hear Gilchrist or her colleagues use the word accidents. That word, they say, implies that the events could not have been avoided and the damage could not have been prevented—exactly the opposite message they want to convey.”

STATS from David Brown:
**Childhood injuries cause the nation about $300 billion a year.
**In motor vehicle deaths, the risk that comes with age reflects numerous behaviors and vulnerabilities. As soon as a child is able to exert willpower, risk goes up. Of children four and younger who are killed, 30% are unrestrained. Of teenagers killed, more than half are not wearing seatbelts.

STATS from the CDC Childhood Injury Report:
**On average 12,175 children…zero to 19 years of age die each year in the United States from an unintentional injury.
**Males have higher injury death rates than females.
**Injuries due to transportation are the leading cause of death for children.

The leading causes of injury death differ by age group:
**For children less than one year of age, two thirds of injury deaths are due to suffocation.
**Drowning is the leading cause of injury death for those one to four years of age.
**For children five to nineteen years of age, the most injury deaths are due to being an occupant in a motor vehicle traffic crash.

**An estimated 9.2 million children annually have an initial emergency department visit for an unintentional injury.
**Males generally have higher non-fatal injury rates than females.
**Injuries due to falls are the leading cause of non-fatal injury: each year, approximately 2.8 million children have an initial emergency department visit for injuries from a fall. For children less than one year of age, falls account for over 50% of non-fatal injuries.