On May 21 and 22, 2014, the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU), along with the Institute for International Programs (IIP) and USAID co-hosted a meeting on child injury at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The meeting brought together members of the injury prevention field in an effort to reduce the global burden on childhood injuries, with a focus on low- and-middle-income countries (LMICs), where more than 95% of both intentional and unintentional child deaths occur.
International Health professor and director of IIP, Bob Black opened the meeting, which was conducted as part of the Health Research Challenge for Impact Program, funded by the United States Agency for International Development with JH-IIRU director, Adnan Hyder discussing the prospects and challenges of child injuries. Olakunle Alonge, JH-IIRU faculty member who is leading the Unit’s work on Saving of Lives from Drowning in Bangladesh (SoLiD) project, discussed effective interventions for child injury and quality of data sources, as well as provided a summary and next steps for the meeting. Also participating from JH-IIRU was Dr. Ricardo Pérez-Núñez, currently a postdoctoral fellow with the Unit.
JH-IIRU, IIP and USAID child injury meeting participants
Other presenters included Dr. Neal Brandes from USAID and Torine Creppy from SafeKids. Several JH-IIRU collaborators participated in the meeting, including Dr. Junaid Razzak from Aga Khan University, Dr. Olive Kobusingye from Makerere University, Dr. Dr. Shams El Arifeen, from icddr,b as well as current and past Global Road Safety Program collaborators, Martha Hijar, former director of Entornos Foundaçion, Mexico and Marieannette Otero, from the Association for Safe International Road Travel (ASIRT).
The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that the five most common unintentional injuries among children are from road traffic injuries, falls, burns, drowning and poisoning.
JH-IIRU is committed to reducing the global burden of childhood unintentional injuries. From our assessment of the potential of child injury prevention in "Saving 1000 children a day: The potential of child and adolescent injury prevention" (accessed here) to our Global Road Safety Program work in low- and middle-income countries that focuses on interventions like seatbelts and child restraints, JH-IIRU is dedicated to using reliable data to assess risks and introduce effective interventions. We have analyzed hospital data on pediatric burn injuries in South Africa, examined child road safety education programs in Malaysia and done extensive home injury risk assessment work in Pakistan.