The project took place in Dar es Salaam, Republic of Tanzania with the goal of creating and evaluating an injury prevention programme. Household surveys were conducted in catchment areas around 18 primary schools divided into control and intervention groups. These surveys included basic demographic data on all school-aged household members, and if they had been involved in an RTI in the previous 12 months. Based on these findings, an injury prevention program was developed and implemented consisting of infrastructure enhancements plus a site-specific educational program. It was implemented initially at the intervention schools. After one year, data were collected in the same manner. Analysis of the crash characteristics, such as vehicle type and time of day were performed.
Data were collected on 12 957 school-aged children in the baseline period and 13 555 school-aged children in the post-intervention. There was a significant reduction in road traffic injuries in the intervention group (p=0.045) and when compared to the control group (p<0.001). When looking at the intervention group, the program showed a significant reduction in RTIs that occurred going to/from school (p=0.021), caused by private vehicles (p=0.002) and RTIs in the morning (0.006). Overall, there was not a significant reduction in motorcycle injuries, but there was a reduction in motorcycle RTIs in the morning (p=0.05) and no change in daytime motorcycle RTIs. All car RTI in the morning were eliminated (p<0.001), whereas the daytime car-associated RTI were not significantly reduced (p=0.79).
This program demonstrated a significant reduction in pediatric RTI after its implementation, and in very specific ways that reflect how exactly the program is effective; namely in travel to/from school, and in the morning when children are potentially most vulnerable. More broadly, this demonstrates a practical approach for running scientifically based injury prevention programmes in resource-limited settings.
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