Health Status > Health Indicators
Injuries are largely predictable and preventable,
and can be controlled by either preventing an event that causes
injury, or by lessening the impact of an injury event. Ways in which
this can happen include education, engineering and design of safety
products, enactment and enforcement of policies and laws, economic
incentives, and improvements in emergency care. Some examples include
the design and oversight of car seats and seatbelts, workplace regulations
regarding safety practices, vouchers for items such as smoke alarms,
and tax incentives for fitting home pools with fences.
There were over 40 million injury-related emergency
department (ED) visits in 2003. Among females, 30 percent of all
ED visits were injury-related, compared to 41 percent of all male
ED visits. This represents 12.7 injury-related visits per 100 females
each year compared to 15.5 visits per 100 males. Among females,
the highest rate of injury-related ED visits (16.5 per 100 people)
occurred among those aged 15 to 24 years and 75 years and older;
however, due to the age distribution of the population, they represented
only 17.7 and 8.9 percent of all female ED visits, respectively.
Unintentional and intentional injuries represented
a higher proportion of ED visits for males than females in 2003.
Among males and females aged 18 years and older, unintentional injuries
accounted for 27.8 and 20.0 percent of ED visits, respectively,
while intentional injuries represented 1.7 and 2.4 percent. Among
both males and females, the two most common causes of injury were
falls and motor vehicle crashes.