Magazine article Public Finance

Government Urged to Cut Child Accident Rates

Magazine article Public Finance

Government Urged to Cut Child Accident Rates

Article excerpt

Government health watchdogs have criticised the 'disgraceful' lack of co-ordinated effort in reducing the number of children who have to be taken to hospital following preventable injury.

Two million children are taken to accident and emergency departments each year suffering 'unintended injuries', such as burns, road-traffic accidents and poisoning, the Audit Commission and Healthcare Commission found in their joint report Better safe than sorry, published on February 8.

Of these, 120,000 are admitted for further hospital treatment and 230 die, but that figure is not definitive because central data collection ended in 2003.

Audit Commission chair Michael O'Higgins said: 'We know we cannot stop all [of the accidents], but we can reduce the number.'

In 2001 an Accident Task Force was established to identify the scale of injury in England and Wales and promote prevention. …

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