Unintentional injury is a leading cause of death among children and young people. While death rates are falling, in 2008/09 around 97 000 children and young people in England were admitted to hospital due to injuries. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has been asked by the Department of Health to produce a suite of five pieces of public health guidance on the prevention of unintentional injuries to children and young people aged under 15. One focuses on strategic and structural issues around injury prevention and the other four provide guidance on effective and cost-effective interventions on the following:
▶ the provision of safety equipment and home risk assessments,
▶ road design and modification,
▶ outdoor play and leisure, and education, and
▶ protective equipment to prevent unintentional injuries on the road.
The NICE public health programme guidance in this area covers strategies, legislation, regulation, enforcement, surveillance and workforce development. It draws on the best available evidence, both national and international, of effectiveness and cost effectiveness and is systematic and transparent in the processes and methods used to access and distil the evidence. A group of external technical and lay experts met regularly over a period of nearly 2 years to assess the quality, strength and applicability of the evidence to the English situation and develop recommendations directed at national and local policy makers, strategic planners, commissioners, managers and practitioners with a direct or indirect role in preventing unintentional injuries. Publication of the guidance towards the end of 2010 will give new direction and impetus to all those working in partnership to prevent unintentional injury among children and young people.
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