OBJECTIVES: To assess the feasibility, strengths and weaknesses, and preventive utility of the Canadian Hospitals Injury Reporting and Prevention Program (CHIRPP) in a paediatric setting in the UK. DESIGN: Implementation and operational evaluation of CHIRPP. SETTING: A paediatric accident and emergency department in Glasgow, Scotland, UK. METHODS: CHIRPP forms were used to collect and analyse data on the circumstances, mechanisms, and types of injuries in 2516 children (age range 0-13 years) presenting to the accident and emergency department over the period of 1 April 1993 to 31 January 1995. The strengths and weaknesses of CHIRPP were assessed by direct observation, discussion with staff, operation of the CHIRPP software, and scrutiny of the output. RESULTS: After initial technical problems, CHIRPP ran smoothly. Although parental compliance was high, staff compliance was low, and this resulted in a low capture rate. Tabulations indicated the potential of the system for identifying both hazardous environments and vulnerable population subgroups at whom specific preventive measures can be targeted. Specific proposals for enhancing the efficiency and preventive utility of CHIRPP in this setting were formulated. CONCLUSIONS: CHIRPP offers hospitals, public health departments, and government agencies in the UK a promising tool for planning national, regional, and local injury prevention.
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