Background Vestfold county has a population of about 240 000. 10 of 14 municipalities are now designated as Safe communities. Evaluation has shown that these municipalities are working more systematically and cross-sectorial than before. It also showed that missing injury data is a critical factor with regard to prioritize the prevention efforts, and to evaluate effects of the effort. There is one main hospital in the county. A national injury monitoring system is already established in the hospital. The completeness of the registration is already about 75%. The hospital is interested in collaboration as they see that their effort on monitoring and data collection will be used in the local communities. The county traffic safety authorities collaborate already with the Safe communities in traffic injury prevention. They want geographical location of traffic injuries, especially for bicycle and pedestrian injuries.
Objective The public health authorities in the county have decided to establish collaboration between the county hospital, the traffic safety authorities and the Safe communities for getting injury data for monitoring (100% coverage of hospital data) and for prevention.
Methods The collaboration consists of three steps: 1) registration of hospital injury data for monitoring and for prevention, 2) analyses of data, 3) dissemination of information to municipalities. Mapping of geographical coordinates of the traffic injuries will be done. The prevention data will come from in-depth studies starting with bicycle and pedestrian injuries.
Findings A project plan is developed. Vestfold County Council has decided to finance this system.
Conclusion and policy implementation Establishing Safe communities in a county creates a momentum for developing collaboration between local public health authorities and the county hospital, and also convincing the hospital to collect injury data. The very important feed-back loop is established.
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