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Geographical differences of non-fatal injuries in four Swedish municipalities -testing a surveillance system based on all the health care services.

Authors Richard Allan Dale
Gunnel Hensing
Published in 15th International Safe Communities Conference
Publication year 2006
Published at Institute of Medicine, School of Public Health and Community Medicine
Language en
Keywords nonfatal injuries, surveillance system, geographical differences
Subject categories Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology


Injury surveillance systems have a critical role in the prevention of injuries. A unique local surveillance system (SLISS) based on all the public health services started in 1998 in the county of Skaraborg, Sweden. The OBJECTIVES of this study were to investigate if there were differences in the pattern of injuries between small and neighbouring municipalities (districts), and to identify risk groups and areas which might need specific strategies to prevent the incidence of injuries. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of the SLISS database from the year 2000-2004 with focus in a sample of 4 small and neighbouring districts. Injury cases were defined as a visit to any public health service unit for care or evaluation of an injury. The denominator data was obtained from Statistics Sweden. Mean Standardised Injury Ratios (m-SIRs) by sex and adjusted by age were used to compare the districts. Skövde was selected as the reference district and poisson regression analysis estimated the level of precision. RESULTS: The total number of cases registered in the four districts between the year 2000 to 2004 was 47,922. Males had ≥30% higher injury rates than females. Falls were the main mechanism among females (≥38/1000) and collisions among males (≥ 31/1000). One municipality had ≥ 2.4 m-SIR at manufacturing work places and ≥ 1.5 m-SIR of head injuries in both sexes. Two municipalities had ≥ 1.43 m-SIR in minor injuries and ≥ 1.7 m-SIR injuries by jamming and cuts in both sexes. Fractures and cerebral concussions did not show significant m-SIRs. CONCLUSIONS: This local surveillance system showed significant differences in the pattern of injuries between these small and neighbouring districts. This has consistency with the findings obtained by Ekman et al (2005). Injuries at work and the incidence of minor injuries have attracted the attention to local authorities for further analysis.

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