Apr 4 2011
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National Public Health Week Begins Today

The American Public Health Association is sponsoring National Public Health Week, beginning today. The theme this year: Safety Is NO Accident: Live Injury Free. The campaign brings attention to the various types of prevalent injuries that affect our public health.

Some of APHA’s U.S. injury statistics are truly startling:

  • Nearly 150,000 people die from injuries every year.
  • Some 30 million people are injured severely enough each year to go to an emergency room.
  • Preventable injuries are among the top ten causes of death for people of all ages.

APHA has put together a useful calendar of safety events being held this week across the country.

A sample of community prevention programs:

  • Lecture on the creation of National Public Health Week at the University of Maryland at College Park.
  • Panel discussion on domestic partner violence in Portland, Ore.
  • Booster seat education program and giveaway in New Britain, Conn.
  • Display of injury-prevention posters created by school children in Chicago, Ill.

 

For more on National Public Health Week, see this interesting post on the Public Health Law Network blog by Jon Vernick, deputy director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy. He discusses the role of legislation in preventing injuries and gives some detail on the Mobile Safety Center that is touring the country right now. As he points out, the public health community is making inroads in the fight against preventable injuries, but there is still much work to be done.

We’ve learned a great deal since 1988 about how to prevent injuries. For example, in 1988 there were 47,000 road traffic deaths in the U.S. In figures just announced April 1st, that total fell to less than 33,000 in 2010, a drop of about 30%.

WEIGH IN: What is your community doing to help promote injury prevention this week?

Tags: Public health, National Public Health Week, Public health law, Safety, Violence