The role of supervisory neglect in childhood injury

CFCA Paper No. 8 – September 2012

Child injury

Injury is the leading cause of death in Australians 1-44 years of age (McClure, Stevenson, & McEvoy, 2004). Transport-related injury, drowning, and assault/homicide were the three leading causes of injury-related deaths in Australian children between 2004 and 2006 (AIHW, 2009). Children are particularly vulnerable to different types of injury depending on their stage of growth and development. This vulnerability is dependent on a combination of the child's developmental stage, exposure to environmental risk factors and the presence of protective factors (Towner & Dowswell, 2002).

Due to the diverse nature of injury in the population, prevention programs are mainly targeted at similar types of injury or circumstances in specific population groups. Examples of such targeted programs include preventing car crashes in newly licensed young drivers or educating beach goers to swim between the flags.