Today, in honour of National Injury Prevention Day, the BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit (BCIRPU), in collaboration with the Atlantic Collaborative on Injury Prevention (ACIP) and the four Atlantic Canadian provinces and organizations, has published the first Cost of Injury in Atlantic Canada 2022 report.
You can see this report at this link: https://costofinjury.ca/ [Go to Atlantic Tab].
The report examines data on injury across Atlantic Canada from 2018, the latest year for which complete statistics are available. It unmasks the economic costs of unintentional and inflicted injuries and the biggest causes of injury in Atlantic Canada. This includes the cost from a societal perspective, including costs to the healthcare system, productivity, and the people behind the numbers: individuals, families, and communities.
“While the economic cost of injury is staggering, it is the human cost of injuries that cannot be forgotten,” says Sandra Newton, Manager for Child Safety Link, the children’s injury prevention program at IWK Health. “The release of this report is an important opportunity to highlight the work being done by organizations like Child Safety Link to bring awareness to the significant cost of injuries and promote the importance of prevention to keep children safe at home, on the road, at school and at play.”
Child Safety Link’s focus is on the new statistics revealed/published for children ages 0-14:
- The total cost of all injuries for children 0-14 yrs in Atlantic Canada is $123.5 million.
- Falls, followed by transport incidents (e.g., motor vehicles, ATVs, bicycles and being a pedestrian) represent the highest costs of injury for children in Atlantic Canada.
- The cost of children’s falls alone is $52 million in Atlantic Canada.
- Atlantic Canada has a significantly lower cost of injury per capita for injuries to children in motor vehicle collisions.
“We were pleased to find that Atlantic Canada had a significantly lower rate of cost of injury per capita for motor vehicle collision injuries,” says Newton. “Our regional investment in policies supporting education, enforcement and built environment is making a difference.” However, she points out that almost all these injuries and deaths, and the resulting costs, could have been prevented. “We must continue to take action to prevent injury and death in children and youth in Atlantic Canada.”
The following three critical investments are crucial to reducing injury and its costs in Atlantic Canada:
- Invest in advocacy to ensure that our laws, the spaces and places where we live, play, work, and travel, and the products we use are all built to standards that minimize injury.
- Invest in preventative measures that we know work to reduce or eliminate injury, and educate people about their effectiveness to ensure these are widely adopted.
- Invest in research to grow our evidence of what is effective to stem Atlantic Canada’s tragic loss of potential by preventing injuries and saving lives in the years to come.