Keeping Children Safe: a multicentre programme of research to increase the evidence base for preventing unintentional injuries in the home in the under-fives.

Kendrick D, Ablewhite J, Achana F, Benford P, Clacy R, Coffey F, et al. Keeping Children Safe: a multicentre programme of research to increase the evidence base for preventing unintentional injuries in the home in the under-fives. Programme Grants Appl Res 2017;5(14)

Burns, scalds, falls and poisoning are major causes of death, disability and health service use in the under-fives. We undertook 13 studies to explore factors associated with injuries, what prevents injuries, the cost of the injuries to the NHS and parents, and what parents and children’s centres (which provide families with information, support and co-ordinated services from a range of professionals) were doing to prevent injuries.

We used evidence from these studies to design a resource [an injury prevention briefing (IPB)] for children’s centres to use with parents for preventing house fire injuries. We gave 12 children’s centres the IPB, with training and support to implement it, (IPB+ group) and 12 centres the IPB without training or support (IPB-only group). A further 12 centres were not given the IPB (usual-care group). Children’s centres in both IPB groups used the IPB and increased injury prevention activity, more markedly in the IPB+ centres. The IPB did not increase how many families had a fire escape plan in either IPB group, but did increase some fire escape behaviours in both groups. Providing the IPB without training and support cost less and was slightly more effective than not providing the IPB. Providing the IPB with training and support cost more but was only slightly more effective than not providing the IPB. Children’s centres can increase some fire safety behaviours in families with young children if they are provided with evidence-based resources such as the IPB. A further IPB has been produced for the prevention of fire-related injuries, falls, poisonings and scalds.

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Preventing accidents in children under five

PHE have produced a new guide with the Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT) that equips all staff who work with children under five to help reduce the number of deaths and injuries | PHE

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Whether you work for a health service, early years education, play schemes, nurseries or are a childminder, this guide will help you help parents and carers keep their children safe from injuries. A serious accident has the potential to cause life-changing disability and disfigurement. A toddler who gets a severe bath water scald will require years of painful skin grafts. A fall at home can result in permanent brain damage. As well as the immediate physical impact, the injuries can have longer term effects on school readiness, education, employment, emotional wellbeing and family relationships.

This guidance, produced in association with the Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT), is for all staff working with children under 5 years and covers the 5 injury priorities:

  • choking, suffocation and strangulation
  • falls
  • burns and scalds
  • poisoning
  • drowning

The guidance also covers fire and roads. Each injury priority includes data for England, actions for health professionals and safety messages for parents and carers.

Read  the full overview here

Read the full guidance here