Road safety awareness was on the timetable today at Hill West Primary School – thanks to a visit by caring staff from Birmingham Children’s Hospital.
Kay Newport, the major trauma and rehabilitation coordinator at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, along with several of her colleagues, talked to the children about road safety as part of a campaign to raise awareness of the impact of severe injuries caused by road traffic accidents. They are working together with the Child Brain Injury Trust, a charity that supports children and families following brain injury.
Birmingham Children’s Hospital is the Children’s Major Trauma Centre for the West Midlands. It provides care for children from North Wales down to Hereford and across to Northampton. In the past 12 months 154 children were admitted to BCH almost 50 per cent of these were as a result of a road traffic accident. In addition, there is a significant group of children in the region who sustain more minor injuries as a result of a RTA but do not require admission to the major trauma centre.
A total of 72 children were admitted to BCH with significant injuries as a result of a road traffic accident. These injuries include brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, significant orthopaedic injuries e.g. multiple fracture or injury to their internal organs. The injuries sustained by these children in many cases have caused life changing outcomes to them and their families. Sadly, four children in the past year died as a result of their injuries.
The children admitted in this period were aged from birth to 16 years. The average age was eight years, with 89 per cent of those injured being of school age. Boys were admitted 3 times more often than girls. The average length of stay in hospital was 11 days with the longest stay being three-and-a-half months.
The Major Trauma team feels that it is vital to reach out to local schools to promote road safety awareness in the hope that they can reduce the number of children who are involved in such accidents.
The team hopes to be able to roll out the programme to schools across the region over the next 12 months
Photo BCH 1 shows Kay Newport back right with Erin Griffiths, Tilly Hull and Edward Mason (year 2 pupils)
Photo BCH 2 shows Kay Newport back left with Freya White, Emily Symes and Dougie Blaine (year 5 pupils)