American Academy of Pediatrics Annual Meeting: Public Health Updates

Oct 19, 2011, 2:50 PM, Posted by

Wish you were there? The keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Pediatrics, which ended yesterday, was Carol Spinney, who played Oscar the Grouch and Big Bird on "Sesame Street" for several decades.

Key public health findings presented at the meeting include:

Minority Children Less Likely to Wear Seatbelts

Less than half of children riding in cars who suffered injuries were wearing seatbelts. Lowest levels of seatbelt use were among Blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans.

Firearm Injuries Among Children Rise 30 Percent

Between 1999 and 2007, close to 200,000 children were seen in U.S. emergency rooms for firearm injuries and close to 70 percent of those injuries were intentional. Researchers say the latest number of firearm injuries represents an increase of 30 percent from the last time the injuries were reported.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Education Still Needed

Despite a 50 percent decrease in deaths from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in recent years, studies have found that many babies are still put to sleep in ways that increase their risk for SIDS such as sharing a bed with parents or being put to sleep on their stomachs.

>> Read more pediatrics coverage

This commentary originally appeared on the RWJF New Public Health blog.