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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: oman

More than three out of 10 injury-related hospital admissions in Oman were children under 15 years of age, according to a new study from researchers at the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit.

Study findings came from data from Oman’s Khoula and Nizwa Hospitals—and looked at injury characteristics, such as external cause of injury, place of injury, care at scene, and injury severity score.

Published November 12 in BMJ Paediatrics Open, the paper was led by JH-IIRU Associate Director Amber Mehmood.

“Through this research, we’ve found that an alarming number of injuries were of vulnerable populations, such as children under 15 years old,” said Mehmood. “These injuries—coming from falls, home injuries, and burns—comprise totals that highlight the need for age-targeted interventions and injury control programs.”

To review the epidemiology and risk factors for childhood injuries, the team assessed data from November 2014 and April 2015 of patients with a diagnosis of injury and trauma admitted to the hospital, as well as those who had trauma team activation in the emergency department.

Out of more than 2,600 cases, nearly 800 were of children, ages 15 and younger. The evaluation found that more than one-third were children 1-5 years of age. Two-thirds of all cases were males. More than half of all the cases were from transport injuries and the most common anatomical injury among all children brought into the hospital were head injuries. It was also found that children with head, face and neck injuries had higher odds of undergoing surgical treatment.

“Childhood injuries in Oman: retrospective review of a multicentre trauma registry data” was written by Amber Mehmood, Priyanka Agrawal, Katharine A Allen, Ammar Al-Kashmiri, Ali Al-Busaidi, and Adnan Ali Hyder.

The research was supported by The Research Council of Oman through grant #TRC/SRG/RS/13/003.

To read the full paper via open access, please click here.

On March 5, 2014, the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU) will formally launch “Improving Trauma Care Systems to Reduce the Burden of Road Traffic Injuries in the Sultanate of Oman,” with a signing ceremony in Muscat.

The project will assess the trauma systems in order to improve hospital and pre-hospital care. The first stages of the project will engage members of the Omani government and The Research Council (TRC) as well as potential stakeholders and collaborators, such as the Ministry of Health and academic institutions such Sultan Qaboos University.

In February, JH-IIRU team members Amber Mehmood, Kent Stevens and Katharine Allen visited several hospitals, including the Royal Hospital, the Armed Forces Hospital, Khoula Hospital Sultan Qaboos University Hospital, Sohaar Hospital and Nizwa Hospital for potential collaborations.

JH-IIRU director, Adnan Hyder will participate in the signing ceremony, which will also include H.E. Dr. Hilal Al Hinai, Secretary General of The Research Council; Dr. Saif Al Hiddabi, member of the steering committee of the national road safety program; and Dr. Talal Al Belushi, board member Oman Road Safety Association (ORSA)

Next steps for the project will include both quantitative and qualitative assessment of various components of trauma care in Oman, training workshops for clinical and research capacity building in trauma/injury prevention and pilot testing hospital based trauma registries.

Katharine Allen, a doctoral candidate at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a valued research assistant for the International Injury Research Unit, was asked to present her latest work during a Global Health Council meeting in Washington, DC this week. Her project delved into how a small country’s health care system made seemingly remarkable progress in a very short amount of time.

Ms. Allen, the recipient of a Fulbright grant, spent seven months in the Sultanate of Oman studying its health system. It was founded in 1972, yet was ranked #1 in efficiency by the World Health Organization in its 2000 report. In less than 40 years, the mortality rate for children under age 5 fell from 181 per 1,000 live births to 11.1. Life expectancy rose from 49.3 to 74.3 years (between 1970 and 2005). And the national number of hospitals surged from two to 58.

Ms. Allen’s research determined that the root cause for Oman’s extraordinary improvements in health care can be traced primarily to its use of five-year plans, clearly defined goals and measurable benchmarks. However, according to Allen, the real test now lies in how this system of development will perform through the coming decades.

The International Injury Research Unit applauds the work of Ms. Allen and looks forward to continuing its support of innovative research projects around the world.

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