Contributing to nearly 2.0% of all deaths, road traffic injuries (RTIs) are a major public health threat in the Republic of Turkey. Unfortunately, major gaps in data collection, particularly with respect to RTIs, continue to exist in the country, despite the significance of this growing epidemic.
Because of this, a team--including Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU) associated faculty, Prasanthi Puvanachandra and research assistant Connie Hoe, as well as colleagues from the Middle Eastern Technical University (METU) in Ankara, Turkey-- have analyzed available secondary data sources and completed a comprehensive review of scientifically published studies in order to present an overview of the epidemiology of RTIs in Turkey.
Their findings, published in the paper, “Burden of Road Traffic Injuries in Turkey,” reveal the burden of RTIs on the health of the Turkish population. Despite new technologies such as the novel digital recording systems to record pre-hospital services and GPS tracking of road traffic crashes by police, which have allowed for a more accurate picture of the burden of RTIs in Turkey, there are still considerable gaps and limitations within the data systems. Incorporation of standardized definitions, regular data audits and timely review of collected data will improve the utility of RTI data and allow it to be used to influence policy.
As part of the Road Safety in 10 Countries project (RS-10), in 2012, JH-IIRU published “Public Health Burden of Road Traffic Injuries: An Assessment from Ten Low- and Middle-Income Countries,” a special issue of Traffic Injury Prevention. This landmark publication includes 11 scientific papers jointly authored with 50 colleagues from JH-IIRU and their in-country collaborators that contribute much-needed new knowledge to the burgeoning issue of road traffic injuries in low- and middle- income countries.
You can access the full article along with the entire special issue here: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/gcpi20/13/sup1
To find out more about JH-IIRU and road safety, contact us at IIRU@JHSPH.edu