First off in this week’s news items is a look at how we can become more actively involved in injury prevention. A recent study looking at bicycle helmet use among pediatric patients discovered that doing inpatient training with real information, with discussions and frank of information on what can happen if you get a severe brain injury, actually gives the prevention message a little more weight.
Prevention Message in Hospital
It was found that these students and pediatric patients in the inpatient setting where this kind of education is used were much more likely to use helmets when riding bikes. Children of young age (age 5 – 15) saw a 72.5% increase in helmet wearing among those involved in the education program. When you think about the numbers of children that don’t wear bike helmets on a regular basis, anything we can do to increase those numbers will prevent many traumatic brain injuries in these individuals. We should be working harder than we do now to work in that prevention field.
A couple weeks ago, I talked on the show about using a patient to provide that discussion point about the severity of brain injury when not wearing a helmet from doing skateboarding activities. Here we are talking about similar types of education and a study that found that it had a significant effect on increasing the use of bicycle helmets. All of these things are important.
Find Opportunities for Prevention Education
When you sit there and think about prevention in your community, don’t sit there and say there’s nothing I can do. There’s always something you can do. There is information out there that you can utilize to put a program in the place. Go to your supervisors, go to the people you work with, or go to your local hospital. You know they are actively involved in prevention in the community all the time for things like cholesterol screening. Ask them to help with your injury prevention idea, too.
Your local health Department has resources, as well. Find a way to get out to the local schools and take a program like this with you. Go to the hospital and make it work in your hospital setting. Perhaps there’s a way that every time a pediatric patient comes in to the ERm part of having them come in is including information on how they can make themselves safer at home. Getting that information in the health care setting apparently holds more weight. Giving them that information and providing access to it while they’re waiting to be treated or just after they’ve been treated and waiting to be discharged in the emergency department can be a way to implement something like this in your system.
Follow-up on the links for this news item and all the links for news and additional resources in the shownotes for this episode — EMS Looks At Crohn’s Disease and Episode 317.