Background In collaboration with selected faculty, the Office of Child Advocacy supports resident education in advocacy and mobilised an evidence-based response to mitigate hazards of button battery ingestions.
Objectives We aimed to improve industry standards on battery and product manufacturing and labelling and to raise awareness of the dangers of button battery ingestions.
Methods Over 18 months, the resident leadership catalysed state and national advocacy. We created a national coalition of clinical, consumer, legislative, and industry advocates and collectively developed interventions to increase regulatory, commercial, public and physician awareness for improved industry standards.
Results We presented relevant information to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) following expert testimony to the Senate Commerce Committee that identified button batteries as an emerging safety hazard. With the support of the CPSC, Underwriters Laboratory and the American Society for Testing Materials are collaborating to create an all-encompassing industry standard to improve battery and electronic product safety. Engineers are developing battery and product redesign. We mobilised support for a Senate appropriations bill requiring the CPSC to promulgate a mandatory safety standard for button batteries. The Illinois State Attorney General released the 2011 Safe Shopper's Guide highlighting button battery hazards to children. Traditional and social media outlets were utilised to improve awareness, including the Battery Controlled campaign launched by Safe Kids Worldwide and Energiser.
Significance Resident mentorship can cultivate leadership in advocacy across the trajectory of training and lifelong learning.
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