OBJECTIVE: To survey the level of interest and involvement in child injury prevention among general practitioners and their practice teams, and to identify factors associated with current interest. DESIGN: Postal survey of a random sample of United Kingdom (UK) medical practitioners. SETTING: Medical practices throughout the UK. SUBJECTS: 957 general practitioners (50% of the total sample) who responded to the survey questionnaire. OUTCOMES: Answer to questions about role in injury prevention. RESULTS: Despite a response rate of only 50%, this study is the largest to examine the role of general practitioners in child injury prevention. Seven hundred and twenty five (77%) of the respondents considered injury prevention to be part of the general practitioner's role, but only 260 (28%) felt that they did enough in this area. Time was cited as the most significant limiting factor. Women doctors, rural practitioners, members of the Royal College of General Practitioners, and doctors with previous personal experience of serious accidents all had more positive attitudes to injury prevention as a routine part of their activities (p < 0.05). Practices providing first aid training for staff were also associated with an interest in injury prevention. The most appropriate times for offering prevention advice were thought to be during child health surveillance clinics and during treatment of an accident. CONCLUSIONS: Awareness about injury prevention opportunities might be improved by emphasising the roles of individual team members and by better addressing the training needs of the whole team.
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