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Progress in preventing injuries: from international collaboration to local implementation
  1. D Sethi*,
  2. F Mitis,
  3. F Racioppi
  1. Correspondence WHO Regional Office for Europe, via F Crispi 10 Rome, 00191, Italy

Abstract

Introduction Injuries and violence are the third leading cause of death in WHO European Region and pose a threat to economic and social development.

Aim and methods The results of a 3-year collaborative project between WHO and the European Commission on progress achieved by Member States in implementing resolution EUR/RC55/R9 and the European Council Recommendation on the prevention of injuries are presented. A web-based database of country profiles was developed using a questionnaire survey completed by health ministry focal persons for injury and violence prevention. Information was provided on progress in delivering on key items of resolution EUR/RC55/R9 and on the implementation of 99 selected evidence-based programmes to prevent unintentional injury and violence and on the cross-cutting risk factors of alcohol and socioeconomic inequalities.

Results There were responses from 47 of the 51 Member States with focal persons. Good progress is taking place, and resolution EUR/RC55/R9 has catalysed change in 75% of respondent countries. Development of national policies for individual types of injury and violence varied from 95% for road safety to 40% for preventing drowning. Implementation of evidence-based programmes for preventing all types of injury and violence varied in countries, and the median score was 73% for all these together.

Conclusions This project reports that the health sector needs to commit more to the widespread implementation of effective programmes both in number and coverage, and to engage with other stakeholders in a multisectoral response to prevent injuries and violence.

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