Falls Lead Reasons For Childhood ER Visits
Accidents Involving Motor Vehicles Also Ranks High

SPECIAL REPORT--Childhood falls keeps emergency medical personnel busy each year. Whether it’s the gash on the head or a broken bone, the unexpected and unintentional tumbles sends millions of kids to the hospital each year, according to a newly released report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC).  However, falls are just one of several leading causes of injury.


According to a new report released by the CDC, an estimated 55 million children and teens from birth to age 19 were treated in hospital emergency department for unintentional injuries over a 5-year period.


The report includes data from 2001 to 2006 and also includes notes from 2000 to 2005 on the number of deaths among children and teens. During that time period, there were 73,052 deaths contributed to unintentional injuries.


Falls were the leading cause of non-fatal injuries (about 2.8 million each year) while most deaths were transportation-related, which numbered 8,000 fatalities as a result of motor vehicle incidences as passengers, pedestrians and cyclists.


Every year, an estimated 9.2 million children visit emergency departments for unintended injuries, according to the report. Falls were associated with over half of all nonfatal injuries involving children less than one year old.  Transportation injuries and death were seen to be highest among children 15-19 years of age. 


Overall, males were almost twice as likely to die as a result of unintentional injuries as females.


“Injury risks change as our children grow and we want them to be appropriately protected as they develop,” said Dr. Ileana Arias, Director of CDC′s Injury Center. “We encourage parents to be vigilant and to understand that there are proven ways to help reduce injuries at each life stage.”


To help parents and caregivers in the prevention of child-related injuries, the CDC is launching the “Protect the Ones You Love” initative. More about this initative can be found at www.cdc.gov/safechild.


Other significant findings of the report was that the highest fatality rates were among occupants of motor vehicles. For those ages 5 to 19, most injury deaths were contributable to automobile crashes. In children 1 to 4 years of age, drownings were the primary cause of untentional death.


Children ages 1 to 4 years of age also had the highest nonfatal injury rates due to poisonings and falls.