Injury and Violence Prevention News

December 2003
In this issue:
1. Some Timely Information on Alcohol and Motor Vehicle Crashes
2. Motor Vehicle Crashes: An Epidemic We Take For Granted
3. Promoting National Child Passenger Safety Awareness Week: February 8-14, 2004
4. Promoting National Burn Awareness Week: February 1-7, 2004
5. Volunteers Needed to Evaluate CDC Injury Center's Web Information
6. 2002 Hospital Discharge Data Added to MIDAS
7. What Do You Think of This Newsletter?

1. Some Timely Information on Alcohol and Motor Vehicle Crashes

With the holidays around the corner, these sites may be helpful in preventing drunk driving:



Top of Page

2. Motor Vehicle Crashes: An Epidemic We Take For Granted

Name a disease or natural disaster that has killed more than 600 Minnesotans every year for the past two decades. Stumped? That's the typical death toll from traffic crashes in Minnesota, and the number has been increasing in the past few years. As noted in the Minnesota Motor Vehicle Crash Facts, 2002 from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, epidemics that kill and injure fewer people are usually addressed immediately... but traffic deaths often are seen as a fact of life. In Minnesota, MDH participates in a coalition of state agencies and organizations called Toward Zero Deaths, which leverages funding for projects to improve enforcement, education, engineering, and emergency medical services.

Commenting on the 43,000 U.S. traffic deaths in 2002, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta said, "If we had that many people die in aviation accidents, we wouldn't have an airplane flying. People wouldn't put up with it. They ought not to put up with 43,000 uncles, aunts, mothers, dads, brothers and friends whose lives are snuffed out by traffic accidents." A recent report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration put the economic cost of highway crashes at more than $230 billion each year. Traffic crashes are the leading cause of death for Americans ages 6 to 28 and result in more permanent disabling injuries than any other type of injury.



Top of Page

3. Promoting National Child Passenger Safety Awareness Week: February 8-14, 2004

Do you know a child aged 4 to 7? He or she is at special risk for motor vehicle crash injuries, because many parents do not provide booster seats.

A recent study in the Journal of American Medical Association, provides the first scientific evidence that booster seats are effective in protecting children ages 4 through 7 from the forces in a crash, as well as from serious injuries caused by ill-fitting adult belts. In the 15-state study, using booster seats reduced the risk of injury by 59 percent when compared to the use of adult belts alone. None of the children in booster seats in the study suffered abdominal or neck injuries caused by adult seat belts, a problem so common that doctors call it seat belt syndrome.

Information and resources to prepare for National Child Passenger Safety Week:



Top of Page

4. Promoting National Burn Awareness Week: February 1-7, 2004

This media opportunity can be combined with other health issues. For example, cigarettes are the leading cause of house fires. Learn about burn prevention from the Shriners Hospital, where you can find tips on preventing burns and fires at home, emergency treatment of burns, and a 15-minute video on burn prevention for preschoolers through third graders.



Top of Page

5. Volunteers Needed to Evaluate CDC Injury Center's Web Information

The Injury Center at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is looking for volunteers to help evaluate the effectiveness of its web information. CDC's Injury Center especially needs people who are NOT health and safety professionals or health care providers but volunteer in injury or violence prevention activities or programs or are just interested in injury and violence prevention issues. Participation will receive a small honorarium for participating in a one-hour telephone interview.

To volunteer, send e-mail to the Injury Center.



Top of Page

6. 2002 Hospital Discharge Data Added to MIDAS

You can now find 2002 data when you on the Minnesota Injury Data Access System (MIDAS). The data, which come to MDH from the Minnesota Hospital Association, represent about 95 percent of all patient discharges for injuries in Minnesota. MIDAS includes data on injuries from 1998 to 2002, from various causes, that were hospitalized or emergency-department treated. You can do your own search for an individual county or statewide data, based on cause of injury, year, age grouping, or other factors.



Top of Page

7. What Do You Think of This Newsletter?

The IVPU News has been published for one year. We would like to know if it is meeting our readers' needs. Please take a moment and fill out a survey with your thoughts on any of these topics:

  • What information does IVPU News give you that you don't get elsewhere?
  • Is the information timely?
  • What resources mentioned in the newsletter have you used?
  • What additional injury or violence prevention information should be included?
  • Would you like to continue receiving the newsletter?
  • Who should be added to the distribution list? (We will check for duplications.)

Include your mailing address with your reply and we will send you a laminated bookmark for the IVPU website. You also will be eligible for a drawing for a lithium-battery smoke alarm.

Thank you for helping to improve our communications!



Top of Page

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
injury.prevention@health.state.mn.us

Top of Page

The Minnesota Department of Health attempts to report all data accurately. If you discover an error, please contact us at Injury.Prevention@health.state.mn.us.
By using this system, you agree to not share these data in ways that would identify individuals or provide information on any malicious acts.