Julian Burtons Burstrust

Annual Report 2012/13 . Prevention Programs Overview

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Overview

Burn injury is widely accepted as being preventable. Those at greatest risk include young children between the ages of 6 months and three, teenage males and young men, and our older population.

Reducing one major burn injury can save between $750,000 and $1,000,000 in life long medical treatment and care. Our Community Awareness and Education activities, driven by data captured by the Australian & New Zealand Bi-National Burns Registry (Bi-NBR), target these high risk demographics through a range of activities from television commercials to presentations at community groups and engagement at community events.

Aim

To reduce the incidence and impact of burn injury through influencing social and behavioural change.

Supporting our Mission, our focus is on collaboration with aligned agencies and community members to provide education in community increasing the community’s knowledge and understanding of how burn injury can be prevented and, in the case of a burn injury occurring, how to adequately manage the injury to minimise the impact of the injury. The demographics most at risk and therefore those we direct education to are:

  1. Babies and young children from birth to three who are at highest risk of a scald injury due to hot liquid from cups of hot beverages, bath water that is too hot and incidents in the kitchen where supervision may be limited. Education is aimed at parents, grandparents and carers of this age group.
  2. Males between the ages of 11 and 59 who are prepared to take risks with fire, making situations volatile when adding an accelerant to the mix. Incidents include camp fires and bonfires, BBQ fires and cleaning hot engines.
  3. Our older Australians. Outcomes for older people suffering a burn injury are usually poorer than for younger people with similar injuries. This is due to age-related changes to the body’s physiology. As we get older we have a decreased ability to cope with the stresses placed on our bodies following an injury.As we age, our skin becomes thinner, more fragile and drier, therefore burning more quickly and more deeply at lower temperatures. There can also be a reduction in our reaction time, dexterity and mobility.

Our Community Education Awareness programs and activities are designed to reach these demographics, providing the knowledge for people to make safe choices to keep themselves and their families safe.