Skip Navigation

Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit

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

Bookmark and Share


Date: Dec 2013

This is the time of year when many people travel, both near and far, in order to celebrate the holidays with friends and family. The season can be a great time for get-togethers, but it can also be especially dangerous for travelers.

Many of us know someone affected by the tragedy of a road traffic crash. It’s a global epidemic that claims two lives every minute on the world’s roads. That adds up to a staggering 1.3 million people every year. How can you stay safe? Here are a few tips:

1.Always use your seatbelt.

2.Do not mix alcohol or other drugs with driving.

3.Avoid distractions by turning off your mobile device; keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel.

4.Make sure you are well rested and adhere to the speed limit.

5.Keep your vehicle safe with regular car and tire maintenance.

6.If you are a parent of an infant or young child, learn about the proper child restraints by visiting; if you are the parent of a teenager, visit the CDC’s Parents Are the Key to Safe Teen Drivers campaign at

While the majority of road traffic fatalities occur in the developing world, road traffic injuries are the top killer of healthy Americans traveling abroad, so these rules don’t change, no matter where you spend your holiday.

For additional information, the Journal of Travel Medicine recently published, “Pre-travel consultation without injury prevention is incomplete,” written by JH-IIRU project coordinator, Shirin Wadhwaniya and director, Adnan Hyder.  Injury Prevention recently published “Rates of intentionally caused and road crash deaths of US citizens abroad,” with contributions by JH-IIRU senior technical advisor, David Bishai and Adnan Hyder.

Access the Journal of Travel Medicine here.

Access Injury Prevention here.

Dear Colleagues,

It is with great sadness that I email you to announce that our beloved Dr. Tim Baker passed away yesterday. This is an incredible loss for our program, the department, and the school to start; but really the entire global health community. As the founder of our department, he was a powerhouse of knowledge, inquiry, and persistence; as a teacher and mentor he was a giant in the field; and as a proponent of the poor and vulnerable, he hid a warm and glowing heart under his witty exterior. So many of us were fortunate to be his students, colleaugues and friends; and how lucky we were to receive his wisdom, insight and sharp advice. Not a man to appreciate praise, he always cut it short; not one to stand pomp and ceremony he often avoided it; and not one to accept failure he believed in the power of humanity to succeed. We will dearly miss him, his humor, his flowers (for ladies only) and his raisin bread - and always remember that he asked us to work harder, and better than anyone else in the world for the cause of social justice and international health.

Let us make sure we never forget his legacy.

Adnan Hyder

Stakeholders and decision makers across health and allied sectors must play a key role in developing and implementing innovative solutions to road traffic injuries and trauma care, especially in developing nations, according to recommendations published in a new report developed by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The report was issued as part of an international health summit held in Doha, Qatar on December 10.

"Road Injuries and Trauma Care: Innovations for Policy," written by professor of International Health and director of the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU), Adnan Hyder, together with JH-IIRU faculty Prasanthi Puvanachandra and doctoral student Kate Allen, identified the best available evidence, good practices and promising innovations emerging around the world on road traffic injury prevention and trauma care.  Developed with a team of global experts, including colleagues from the World Health Organization, The Global Road Safety Partnership, private sector and Bloomberg Philanthropies, the report was released as part of the inaugural World Innovation Summit on Health, 2013 (WISH-2013).

“Road traffic injuries kill more than 1.2 million people worldwide each year and injure an additional 20 to 50 million. They are the 8th leading cause of death globally, and the leading cause of death for young people aged 15-29 years,” said Hyder. “Our report assesses the current spectrum of available innovations to address road traffic injuries and trauma care, contextualizes the work that needs to be undertaken to move the field forward and synthesizes this knowledge into practical policy recommendations for decision-makers.”

Perhaps most importantly, the report takes a global and multi-sectoral perspective, with sensitivity to those regions of the world that face specific social, economic and financial challenges, to examine the current work being done and provoke both discussion and action, especially in those areas requiring immediate attention or urgent retooling of approaches.

“The symposium in Qatar—the first of its kind—stresses the pivotal role innovation plays in addressing global health challenges,” said Professor David Bishai, forum member and senior technical advisor to JH-IIRU. “I believe the resulting report represents an important milestone for global health.”

The report concludes by setting forth ten recommendations the authors hope will be taken up by decision-makers and serve as a foundation for future work, including urging stakeholders to promote and use evidence-based innovations for road safety and trauma care, and asking global health leaders and UN agencies to ensure road safety and trauma care are included as key concerns for sustainable global health.

The summit, a high-profile initiative aimed at promoting and facilitating innovations in the delivery of healthcare around the globe, was attended by high-level officials, key decision-makers, government officials, academics, researchers and business leaders focused on tackling some of the most pressing global health challenges like road traffic injury and trauma care, as well as mental health, obesity and end-of-life care, among others.

“The cost of dealing with the consequences of these crashes, including trauma care, is in the billions of dollars. Moreover, in low- and middle-income countries, the rate of road traffic injuries is twice as high as in developed nations. While road safety issues have recently begun garnering more attention, the reality is that road injuries are responsible for more than one third of the world’s injury burden. These shocking numbers are unacceptable and represent a call to action for the global health community,” added Hyder.

JH-IIRU director, Adnan Hyder, speaks at the inaugural World Innovation Summit for Health

"Road Injuries and Trauma Care: Innovations for Policy" is available for download at

On December 5, 2013, the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU) joined the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Government of Turkey to launch a new campaign to prevent speeding on Turkey’s roads. “Think About Consequences, Slow Down Your Speed,” was released as part of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Global Road Safety Program and aims to reduce the number of deaths and injuries due to speeding.

Nearly 10,000 people die each year in Turkey from road traffic crashes, and an estimated 2 million more are injured. Speeding is considered one of the main risk factors for fatal crashes. Studies reveal that the relationship between speed and injury severity is particularly critical for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists.

While there, JH-IIRU team members, assistant scientist, Shivam Gupta and doctoral student, Connie Hoe, presented the unit’s monitoring and evaluation data on speeding and seatbelt use, the two major risk factors for the country, from the two intervention sites, Ankara and Afyon. In Afyon, the overall seatbelt-wearing rate has increased significantly since the beginning of the Global Road Safety Program, from 3.9% in November 2010 to 72.9% in June 2013. In Ankara, the rate has increased as well, from approximately 23% in November 2010 to 37.9% in June 2013. JH-IIRU has completed more than 800,000 observations on speeding and seatbelt use in both sites since 2010.

There is extensive evidence from around the world that road safety campaigns complemented by the strict enforcement of laws can dramatically decrease reckless behavior on the roads.

Kelly Henning, head of global health programs at Bloomberg Philanthropies said, “Over 8700 Turkish citizens are killed in road traffic crashes each year. The launch of this new social marketing campaign highlighting the dangers of speeding, along with increased police enforcement, will reduce the number of road traffic crashes and unnecessary fatalities and injuries on Turkey's roads. We support efforts to strengthen The Highway Traffic Safety Law to ensure greater safety on Turkey's roads.”

This new speeding prevention campaign will be aired locally for a period of four weeks, and consists of television commercials, radio messages and outdoor and indoor print-ads on billboards and buses.

JH-IIRU is currently working with a consortium of partners to improve road safety in low- and middle-income countries around the world as part of the Global Road Safety Program, a five-year initiative that draws on support from Bloomberg Philanthropies and the World Health Organization to evaluate and implement road safety solutions where they are needed most.

More information can be found here:

For additional information, including media campaigns, visit the WHO site:


The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) is an international campaign that grew from the first Women's Global Leadership Institute in 1991. The dates, November 25 (International Day Against Violence Against Women) -December 10 (International Human Rights Day) were chosen to symbolize that violence against women is a human rights violation.

The Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit is pleased to support Ahimsa, a student group at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health dedicated to a violence-free world, in their efforts to bring attention to the 16 Days Campaign and subsequently all forms of gender-based violence.

On Friday, December 6, Ahimsa has organized a panel discussion, “What is the media’s role in ending gender-based violence in LMICs” at the Bloomberg School.  Contact Veena Sriram at if you would like to attend.

The group has also created a slideshow that includes powerful images from the UN WOMEN campaign, which is a series of ads that use genuine Google Searches to highlight the prevalence of sexism and discrimination against women.  Find out more and view the ads here:  The group also plans to display posters of these powerful images at the entrances to the Bloomberg School, all in an effort to start a dialogue about GBV.

The Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit believes it is the right of every woman and girl to live free of violence. That is why we support  Ahimsa and their efforts to join the 16 Days of Activism Campaign,  to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls in all parts of the world.

To find out more about Gender-based violence, visit these websites                                                    

Or join the conversation on Twitter with the hashtags:


©, Johns Hopkins University. All rights reserved.
Web policies, 615 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205