The UK Burden of Injury Study was a major study that aimed to understand the impacts of unintentional injury on people. Both quantitative and qualitative measures were used. This paper explores the patients experience of injury, its impact on their lives from a qualitative perspective.
In-depth interviews were carried out among 89 participants of different ages, genders and employment status who had suffered from a variety of different injuries across different settings, presenting to several A&E departments.
Over half of the participants experienced some emotional impact from their injury. Many participants, often older, experienced some loss of confidence as a result of their injury. Adequate, timely information was an important concern for participants during their care. Financial and employment issues had a greater impact on those participants that were self employed. Support from friends, family and neighbours were regarded by participants as extremely important especially during the first few weeks/months after leaving hospital.
The research confirms the importance of social support for facilitating recovery from injury. The role of information seems very important to patients throughout the process of treatment, discharge and rehabilitation. For some patients it was clear that their injury could lead to mental health problems when the injury had been life changing this has implications for the support of people after discharge. This research also affirms the importance of injury prevention to avoid these major impacts on people's lives.
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