Typical of many developing countries, Vietnam’s burden of road traffic injuries (RTIs) is high—about half of all injury-related fatalities are from RTIs-- and as the population has increased, the number of motor vehicles has risen proportionately as well. And despite Vietnam having one of the strictest alcohol legislations in the region, a recent study concluded that more than 10% of all road traffic crashes were caused by alcohol.

Recently, members of the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU), including associate faculty member Nhan T. Tran, associate director Abdulgafoor M. Bachani and Jeffrey C. Lunnen, along with their colleagues from the Hanoi School of Public Health and the World Health Organization, Vietnam, published a study aimed at illustrating the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAPs) around alcohol use and drinking and driving by age and sex in three provinces in Vietnam.

The study, entitled “Drinking and Driving in Vietnam: Public Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices,” which appears in the special issue of Traffic Injury Prevention, concluded that in order to effectively reduce the prevalence of drinking and driving in Vietnam, first understanding the prevailing attitudes surrounding the practice is essential.  The study found that an increased enforcement-based, multifaceted approach, which may include enhanced enforcement of existing legislation, increased social marketing and programs that provide alternatives to drinking and driving, is needed.

In the spring of 2012, The 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 as part of theRoad Safety in 10 Countries project (RS-10). 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.