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Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit

A World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Injuries, Violence and Accident Prevention

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Keyword: low- and middle-income countries

The Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit is pleased to unveil its newly re-designed website, featuring enhanced information about our research and projects, such as the Road Safety in 10 Countries (RS-10) project and Chronic TRIAD. The new site has special sections for upcoming events and spotlighted information, like the launch of the special issue of Traffic Injury Prevention, so visitors can keep up with the latest JH-IIRU happenings.

The website also now allows readers to comment on news items, making visiting the site a much more interactive experience than before. We hope visitors will take advantage of this new aspect, along with access to our Twitter feed, to create and promote an ongoing dialogue about the burden of injuries around the world.

JH-IIRU welcomes you to the new site. Let us know what you think of it!

Since 1991, the total number of motor vehicles has more than doubled in Russia. But with rapid motorization comes an increase in road traffic injuries (RTIs). In 2009, there were more than 250,000 RTIs and more than 26,000 deaths resulting from RTIs.

Russia’s high instance of injuries from road traffic collisions has been attributed in part to low rate of seatbelt use (the estimates of which vary across the Federation from 15-33 percent). Previous research has shown the use of seatbelts is an important means of reducing the risk of death or serious injury in a crash by almost 50% for both drivers and front seat passengers and by 25% for rear seat passengers. Because of these statistics, the Russian federal government has taken steps to improve overall road safety and by extension, increase seatbelt wearing rates, by instituting programs such as the Federal Targeted Program for Ensuring Road Traffic Safety. Despite these efforts, there has been no study published in English to examine their impact.

It is for this reason that JH-IIRU team members, including affiliated faculty Sai Ma,  along with RS-10 consortium partners from Lipetsk State Technical University and the World Health Organization, recently published “Seatbelt and Child Seat Use in Lipetskaya Oblast, Russia: Frequencies, Attitudes, and Perceptions.” This article, the first study published in English, describes, in detail, the patterns of seatbelt use and attitudes among drivers and passengers toward seatbelt use in Russia.

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.

To find out more about JH-IIRU and road safety, contact us at

The Road Traffic Injuries Research Network (RTIRN) has released its January-March 2012 newsletter with a special focus on capacity development for road traffic injury (RTI) research. The newsletter is supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies from their Bloomberg Global Road Safety Project, provided by the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU). The issue features contributions from RTIRN partners all around the globe including an introduction by Dr. Adnan Hyder, the unit’s director and RTIRN’s chair, and a piece on building capacity in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) by Dr. Abdul Bachani, the unit’s associate director for training and capacity development. 

Dr. Bachani’s contribution, “Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit Building Capacity for Injury Prevention in Low- and Middle-Income Countries,” expounded on JH-IIRU’s ongoing training efforts in LMICs—an essential part of its mission. These efforts include: learning by doing, workshops, and formal coursework through the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH). Indeed JH-IIRU team members are actively involved in hands-on training for local collaborators and regularly conduct workshops on a variety of injury prevention topics in addition to offering formal on campus and online courses. IIRU understands cost can be a major hindrance to the transfer of knowledge, consequently Dr. Bachani has worked to make the material covered in two courses, Confronting the Burden of Injuries and Using Summary Measures of Health to Improve Health Systems, available for free access via the Johns Hopkins Open Course Ware System (

To access the entire RTIRN January-March newsletter, please follow this link:

For more information visit the RTIRN website; or contact:
RTIRN is on Facebook and Twitter: @RTIRN

In September 2011, the Sixty-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly acknowledged Bloomberg Philanthropies’ donation of US$ 125 million to improve global road safety. This contribution has supported the implementation of a five-year project in 10 low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) to prevent road traffic injuries, which coincides with the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. The multi-million dollar contribution is considered the largest donation to global road safety by far.The recipients of the donation represent a global consortium on road safety. Since 2009, The Johns Hopkins University International Injuries Research Unit (JH-IIRU) has partnered with five other international institutions: the World Health Organization, the World Bank Global Road Safety Facility, the Global Road Safety Commitment, EMBARQ - the World Resources Institute Center for Sustainable Transport, and the Association for Safe International Road Travel. To date JH-IIRU has closely monitored road safety interventions in each RS-10 country and collected several rounds of primary data as regards targeted risk factors: motorcycle helmet use, seatbelt and child restraint use, speeding and drunk driving.

The executive director of the World Health Organization’s Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, Dr. Abdul Ghaffar, visited the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit on August 15, 2011.

Dr. Ghaffar has worked for more than 25 years in low and middle-income countries managing research for health systems, and teaching health policy and management. He earned his PhD in international health from Johns Hopkins, and his interest is to trigger a global movement to use evidence for improved policy and management decisions at the country level.

Members of the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit were pleased to meet with Dr. Ghaffar and discuss potential collaborations.


Dr. Abdul Ghaffar, executive director of the WHO Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, and Dr. Adnan Hyder, director of the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit.

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