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The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a new policy statement on choking hazards for young children. Unlike earlier statements, the current version calls for warning labels to be added to food packaging, similar to the labels that currently exist on toys with small parts. Foods that are of most concern in the USA include hot dogs, grapes, popcorn, hard candy, nuts, and carrots. The policy statement calls for oversight of these and other choking hazards foods by the Food and Drug Administration and exhorts the Consumer Product Safety Commission to enhance the existing National Electronic Injury Surveillance System–All Injury Program to conduct more detailed surveillance of food-related choking incidents among children.

▶ Committee on Injury, Violence, and Poison Prevention. Prevention of choking among children. Pediatrics 2010;125:601–7.

Another new guideline addresses falls among older adults. Produced by the American Geriatrics Society and the British Geriatrics Society and involving a multidisciplinary panel of participants, it replaces one issued in 2001 by the two societies and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. The guideline emphasises that primary care physicians should annually screen all of their older patients for risk factors that can lead to falls. It focuses on older adults who live in the community and highlights nine multi-factorial multi-component interventions, but also provides specific recommendations for older persons in long-term care and older persons with cognitive impairment. Several other professional organisations, …

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