Injury and Violence Prevention News

September 2003
In this issue:
1. Just Released at "Champions" Recognition Meeting - Domestic and Sexual Violence in Minnesota: Strategies for Prevention and Intervention
2. Injury Data Shows Some Peaks in October
3. Mark Kinde Receives National Recognition From Peers
4. What's Your Injury and Violence Prevention Story?
5. Youngest Children Most At Risk for Fire Death
6. Seatbelt Usage Up, But Tragedies Still Happen
7. Minnesota Moves Toward Zero Deaths in Motor Vehicle Crashes

1. Just Released at "Champions" Recognition Meeting - Domestic and Sexual Violence in Minnesota: Strategies for Prevention and Intervention

Domestic and Sexual Violence: Strategies for Prevention and Intervention is newly published by the MDH Injury and Violence Prevention Unit, under a Violence Against Women planning grant from the CDC. It was released at a September 10 event recognizing health professions and advocates, called Celebrate the Champions, Renew the Commitment.

Keynote speaker was Rebecca Whiteman of the Family Violence Prevention Fund, based in San Francisco. Carol Woolverton, MDH Assistant Commissioner, gave welcoming remarks. Two survivors of domestic and sexual violence told stories of how they were helped by health providers and others, and Marlene Jezierski of Partners for Violence Prevention in St. Paul presented the plan.

The planning document was developed following an assessment in 2002 of health care and public health policies and practices in domestic and sexual violence. Individuals and organizations from a variety of perspectives helped develop the plan.

If you indicate that you wish to become a registered supporter of the plan, you will receive more information on implementation and will be put in contact with other supporters.

Remember that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. For resources to plan activities, visit VAWnet and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

October 8 is Health Cares About Domestic Violence Day; which encourages screening for domestic violence. Family Violence Prevention Fund has additional information.

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2. Injury Data Shows Some Peaks in October

Machinery injuries
IVPU data from 2001 shows that machinery was a major cause of hospitalized injury in October, causing more nonfatal hospitalized injuries than in any other month (15 percent of the 265 total hospitalized cases).

About half of the machinery injuries were occupational.

  • Woodworking equipment caused most of the machinery injuries (20 percent), followed by agricultural machines (18 percent), and lifting machines (14 percent).

  • Fractures were the most common injuries received (46 percent) followed by open wounds, which may include amputations (32 percent).

  • Males age 15-59 accounted for 74 percent of the total machinery injuries.

  • Sixty percent of the cases were residents of greater Minnesota.

Unintentional firearm and air gun injuries
Fifteen percent of the 226 total emergency department-treated injuries of this type for the year occurred in October 2001.

  • In 2001 overall, air gun injuries accounted for 59 percent of these injuries.
  • Open wounds were the most common injuries received (75 percent) followed by superficial injuries and bruises (20 percent).
  • Males age 10-19 accounted for 19 percent of the total and males age 20-24 accounted for 12 percent.
  • Fifty-five percent were residents of greater Minnesota.

Deaths from unintentional falls
In 2000 and 2001 combined, unintentional fall deaths occurred more often in October (106 deaths, 9.6 percent of the total) than in previous months, with an increasing trend toward the peak in January (120 deaths, 10.9 percent of the total).

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3. Mark Kinde Receives National Recognition From Peers

On September 4, the State and Territorial Injury Program Directors Association (STIPDA) recognized MDH Injury Unit Supervisor Mark Kinde for his national leadership in injury and violence prevention.

Mark received a Service Award, recognizing his many contributions to the development of the injury prevention and control field at the national level. He also received the President's Award, recognizing his leadership and contribution in the enhancement and formalization of STIPDA's membership structure. Mark was elected as STIPDA treasurer.

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4. What's Your Injury and Violence Prevention Story?

The Injury and Violence Prevention Unit is developing a plan for preventing unintentional and intentional injury in Minnesota. Users of the plan will find recommendations to act on and partners to work with.

We would like to include in the plan some quotes and short stories from people who care about injury and violence prevention. Have you, or has someone you know or work with, experienced any of these kinds of injuries?

  • bicycle injury
  • motor vehicle crash
  • house fire
  • firearm injury
  • fall
  • farm injury
  • drowning
  • sports injury
  • poisoning
  • sexual violence
  • domestic violence
  • youth violence
  • suicide attempt
The survey form asks you to write a few sentences about how the injury changed people's lives, what could have prevented it, and your thoughts about the issue. Names will not be used.

Your quote or story will make this plan more interesting and relevant to people's lives. Thus you will be part of preventing injury and violence in Minnesota. Thank you!

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5. Youngest Children Most At Risk for Fire Death

Children aged 4 and under are more than twice as likely to die in residential fires than any other age group, said a recent report from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

In Minnesota, according to IVPU data, fire is the third leading cause of injury-related deaths for children aged 1-4. Minnesota Fire Marshal data for 2001 showed that in 34 percent of home fire deaths, smoke alarms were not present or were not working; in another 29 percent, it was impossible to determine whether they were present. Only about 25 percent of families have actually developed and practiced a home fire escape plan, the FEMA study found.

Several Minnesota communities (Beltrami, Douglas, Koochiching, Olmsted, Watonwan, and Winona Counties, plus Columbia Heights and Golden Valley) are participating in Alarmed and Alert, a CDC-funded program. Public health staff and firefighters work together to install lithium-powered smoke alarms and to provide fire safety education to homeowners.

October 5-11 is National Fire Prevention Week, sponsored by NFPA. The When Fire Strikes: Get Out! Stay Out! campaign stresses proper installation of smoke alarms and development of a fire evacuation plan.

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6. Seatbelt Usage Up, But Tragedies Still Happen

The clicking of seat belt buckles is an increasingly common sound as American motorists take to the road, according to an MSNBC.

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety states that seat belts are the most effective safety devices in vehicles. In potentially fatal crashes they increase chances of survival by 45 percent in a car and 60 percent in a light truck. But about 38 percent of the people who died in car crashes did not wear seat belts. Resources on seat belt campaigns can be found at the Minnesota Safety Council.

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7. Minnesota Moves Toward Zero Deaths in Motor Vehicle Crashes

Its name means what it says. Toward Zero Deaths is a coalition of Minnesota state agencies working toward elimination of deaths in motor vehicle crashes. Current members of the coalition are the Minnesota departments of Public Safety, Transportation, and Health; the State Highway Patrol; the County Engineers Association, the Federal Highway Administration, and the University of Minnesota Center for Transportation Studies.

Since its founding in 2001, the coalition has focused on three pilot sites that have high crash rates: Highway 52 between the Twin Cities and Rochester, Highway 55 in the Buffalo area, and Highways 65 and 95 in the Cambridge area.

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Also see > National Center for Injury Prevention & Control (NCIPC), at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, for the latest injury prevention news at the national-level.

mdh logo
Injury and Violence Prevention Unit
Minnesota Department of Health
PO BOX 64882
ST PAUL MN 55164-0882
(651) 201-5484

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