Background Although unintentional injury is an issue for Health Ministries around the world, the place of safety promotion is largely silent in the health sector. In New Zealand, a significant number of the staff involved in safety promotion has qualifications in health promotion yet are rarely exposed to injury prevention as a public health issue.
The Auckland University of Technology (AUT) emphasises the link between theory and practice. Students majoring in health promotion are required to complete a 150 h health promotion practicum. One opportunity was identified for students to complete a placement at SWIP.
Purpose To build health promotion workforce capacity through agency placements focussed on injury prevention.
Methods AUT students were placed with Safe Waitakere Injury Prevention. Projects included piercing & cutting, community events and resource development. The placement programme was underpinned by the Ottawa Charter and Ti Tiriti o Waitangi. Students received weekly agency supervision and on campus teaching.
Results Serendipitously, longer placement has been beneficial to all parties. Students had opportunity to: understand the injury issue, value the role of collaboration and recognise where injury prevention crosscuts with health promotion. The SWIP placement supervisors report students have contributed to reflective practice and improvements; and the AUT supervisor observes student exposure to placements in injury prevention recognises an overdue focus for health promotion.
Contribution to the Field This initiative broadens the student health promotion practical experience by exposure to safety promotion via the workplace initiatives that reduce and prevent unintentional injury.
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