The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health has warned that accidental injury is the leading cause of death for boys aged one to four.
In a report launched at the Houses of Parliament, senior doctors also reveal:
- Over 800 children aged one to nine die each year in the UK. One in eight of these deaths are caused by accidents.
- Last year, over 45,000 under-fives were admitted to hospitals across England, Scotland and Wales as a result of accidents.
- Almost three-quarters of these accidents happened at home.
- Nearly 1,300 young people aged 10 to 19 die each year in the UK. One in three of these deaths are caused by accidents.
- Accidental injury is the leading cause of death for young people aged 10 to 19.
- There is a strong link between deprivation and the risk of death throughout childhood.
Accidents are preventable
The Royal College is worried that accidents are preventable but remain a leading cause of death, ill-health and disability for children in the UK. They stress that:
- A reduction in accidental injuries can be achieved at low cost, particularly through parent education and local co-ordination.
- Health, education and social care early years professionals need training to prevent accidents in early years’ settings, and to educate and support parents in accident prevention.
- Local authorities have a responsibility to provide strategic leadership for injury prevention, bringing together a very wide range of services from diverse sectors including health, education, social care, housing and emergency services.
Every child’s death is a tragedy. Far too many children still die from preventable accidents. Please help us make 2017 the year the heartache stops.