Injury prevention and control (Reasons for selection (Responsible for 7%…
Injury prevention and control
Injuries include intentional
harm such as suicide and
unintentional harm such as
falls, poisonings and
drowning, burns, scalds and
transport related injuries.
Types of injuries: Poisonings
in children, drowning or near drowning, falls in children, falls in
Reasons for selection
Responsible for 7% of BOD in 2010
Almost 6.2% of all deaths in Australia 2010 were injury related
Main cause of death for people under 45.
All injuries are considered to be preventable.
Injuries occur significantly direct, indirect and intangible
Determinants that act as risk factors
alcohol use. People affected by alcohol often take unnecessary risks that can result in higher rates of injury, such as drink driving or swimming while intoxicated.
drug use. This contributes to higher rates of mental illness, which can influence self-harm and violence rates. It also contributes to disability and death if driving while under the influence.
physical activity. People participating in contact sports may be at an increased risk for sport-related injuries.
risk-taking behaviour. Men are more likely than women to take risks and therefore have higher rates of injury.
Higher levels of testosterone in males is a contributing factor to the higher levels of risk-taking such as speeding while driving, alcohol and drug misuse, and acts of aggression, all of which contribute to higher rates of injuries among males.
Body shape and size can also influence the types of injury people are likely to sustain. For example, the body shape and size of an infant makes them more likely to drown as their heads are large compared with the rest of their body, making it difficult for them to lift their head out of the water.
As discussed, age can be a significant risk factor for a range of injuries. For example, the loss of bone mass in older people can make them more likely to sustain fractures compared to a young person. Children may not understand warnings on cleaning agents and other chemicals, which can increase the risk of accidental poisoning.
socioeconomic status. Those of lower socioeconomic status are more likely to be injured. This may be a result of lower levels of education, the types of occupations carried out or lack of financial resources to ensure cars are in safe working order.
social exclusion and social isolation. Those who are socially excluded and isolated may not have people to talk to when required. This can increase the risk of mental health issues and injuries from self-harm.
work environment. Aspects of the work environment can contribute to the risk of injuries. Machinery associated with farming and mining are examples of causes of such injuries.
transport. Poor road quality, lighting and signage all impact on the risk of injuries. In areas where these factors are not optimal, the risk of injury increases.
housing. Unsafe housing can increase the risk of falls and injuries.
access to recreation facilities. Access to bodies of water may increase the risk of drowning. This includes beaches, rivers, lakes, dams and swimming pools.
Examples of direct costs to individuals include:
patient co-payments for medical treatment. Individuals with injuries often require ongoing treatment. Doctors’ and specialists’ services are examples of medical treatment.
patient co-payments for pharmaceuticals. Medication may be required to relieve pain and reduce the risk of infection. Patient co-payments are required for these medicines.
ambulance transport. In many cases, injured individuals require ambulance transport. The cost of this service is paid for by the individual.
Direct costs to the community include:
Medicare contributions associated with surgery and other treatment in public and private hospitals. Medicare will pay all the fees associated with treatment in public hospitals and some of the costs associated with treatment in private hospitals.
Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme costs. Pharmaceuticals may be prescribed to assist in pain management.
various aids such as wheelchairs and crutches. Private health insurance companies and other insurance agencies such as the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and Workcover incur these costs in some instances.
health promotion programs. Organisations such as the TAC and WorkSafe implement many health promotion programs aimed at reducing the risk of injury on roads and in workplaces.
Specific examples of indirect costs to the individual include: long-term care. Individuals requiring long-term care may be required to contribute to these costs.
payment for services. A person who is disabled as a result of an injury may have to employ people to perform tasks they used to be able to complete themselves, such as mowing the lawn.
transport costs. If the individual is unable to drive, they may have to pay for someone to drive them.
examples of indirect costs to the community include: lost productivity. Individuals who have sustained injuries may not be able to work.
welfare payments and lost taxation revenue. As a result of not being able to work, people disabled by injury contribute to a range of costs to the community, such as disability payments and lost taxation revenue.
As injuries are unforeseen, there are many costs related to the mental health of the individual. A person who is permanently disabled may experience frustration as they relearn tasks they could once do. They may also have to adjust to living without a limb or without the use of limbs.
Deaths from injuries cause anguish among family members, friends and other members of the community, especially as injuries are unforeseeable and cause a significant degree of shock.
Health Promotion Program
Play it safe by the water