Injury is a public health problem of major importance. Throughout the world, it is a leading cause of death and disability, and global burden of disease projections indicate that the problem is worsening. But injury is a preventable health condition. To reduce injury-related harm, the science that underpins potential solutions must first be understood. In this book, the science that is used to conceptualise the problem of injury and provides a basis for attempts to minimise injury-related harm is introduced.
The book’s 24 chapters, by 38 specialist contributors, are organised into 5 sections.
In Section I the public health problem of injury is introduced. An historical perspective on injury is offered. An answer to the question, ‘why bother preventing injury’ is provided. Tools for how solutions might be thought about are provided. A model for injury causation from the perspectives of epidemiology, biomechanics, engineering, sociology, and psychology is described.
Section 2 focuses on measurement and classification, tools for visualising the nature and extent of injury. Commonly-used injury classification systems and clinical scoring systems are described. Injury outcome measurement and injury surveillance are explained. Sources of error, and how errors might be minimised, are outlined.
In Section 3 ‘risk factors’ are defined in the context of the injury models that were introduced in Section I. Epidemiological, biomechanical, and ergonomic approaches to risk factor identification are discussed.
Section 4 focuses on how interventions and countermeasures are developed, implemented, and evaluated. Epidemiological, biomechanical, and behavioural sciences’ approaches are discussed. Acute care management and rehabilitation of injury are outlined.
The science of implementation is the focus of Section 5: how countermeasures might best be delivered to a target population. Chapters focus on policy development, law and regulation, advocacy, social marketing, behaviour change programs, community-based programs, program evaluation, and economic evaluation.