May is National Trauma Awareness Month
May 03, 2022
May is National Trauma Awareness Month and here's a sobering statistic you may not know – traumatic injuries are the leading cause of death for children and adults between the ages of one and 45. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 275,000 people die each year due to unintentional injury. The impact of injury can have long lasting effects such as disability, mental health disorders and financial issues.
In 2021, Denver Health admitted over 2,300 adult and pediatric patients due to trauma-related injuries. Denver Health's Level One Trauma Team has a 98 percent average survival rate for the worst types of injuries, but the goal of Trauma Awareness Month is to reduce those injuries in the first place.
The Ernest E. Moore Shock Trauma Center at Denver Health is one of the world's leading Trauma Centers and has one of the highest survival rates in the country. In addition to its robust Adult Level One Trauma Center, Denver Health is also an American College of Surgeons verified Level Two Pediatric Trauma Center. Our regional Trauma Center, which manages cases in Colorado and six neighboring states, receives and cares for patients with any type of traumatic injury.
Hopefully, you never need to see us because most injuries are preventable. Choosing to be aware of your environment as well as staying informed on the latest safety facts is a great place to start. Following the rules of the road, "safe-play" and wearing appropriate safety gear are all essential in reducing preventable injuries.
Top 10 Injury Prevention Tips
Here is a list of the top 10 things you can do to stay safe and prevent injuries.
- Always remain aware of your surroundings: Notice your environment, the people around you and take note of exits.
- Fall Precaution: Falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths for people over the age of 65. Make sure walking paths are clear of clutter, minimalize tripping hazards (such as carpets and rugs), turn on lights and make sure handrails are tightened.
- Don't Text and Drive: One out of four motor vehicle crashes in the United States are caused by texting and driving. You are 23 times more likely to be involved in a motor vehicle crash if you text and drive.
- Wear a Seatbelt: Those not wearing seat belts are 30 times more likely to be ejected from a vehicle during a crash. Seatbelts reduce the risks of death by 45 percent and serious injury by 50 percent.
- Child Vehicle Safety: Motor vehicle injuries are a leading cause of death among children. Buckling children in age- and size-appropriate car seats, booster seats and seatbelts reduces serious and fatal injuries by up to 80 percent.
- Wear a Helmet: Having a helmet on when bike riding reduces the risks of head injury by at least 45 percent, brain injury by 33 percent, facial injury by 27 percent and fatal injury by 29 percent.
- Intimate Partner Violence Prevention: One in five women and one in seven men report having experienced severe physical violence from an intimate partner in their lifetime. Denver Health provides on-site victim services to domestic violence victims and their children. Help is also available by contacting our partners at the Rose Andom Center.
- Fire Safety: Ensure home smoke alarms are working. A working home smoke alarm decreases the risk of dying in a fire by 50 percent.
- Suicide Prevention: Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, with approximately one death every 11 minutes in 2019, or 47,500 persons. If you need help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
- Firearm Violence Prevention: 39,740 fire-arm-related deaths occurred in the United States in 2018; approximately 109 people die from a firearm-related injury per day. Treat every gun as if it is loaded. Learn more here.
National Trauma Survivors Day
National Trauma Awareness Month includes National Trauma Survivors Day, which is on May 18, 2022. As a Trauma Survivor Network site, the Denver Health Trauma Program would like to honor and celebrate all our trauma survivors on this day. Every year, we draw inspiration from and provide support to survivors of traumatic injuries and their caregivers, opening the road to their recovery from trauma.
At Denver Health, the Trauma Survivors Network (TSN) is a community of patients and families who are looking to connect with one another and rebuild their lives after a serious injury. Joining this community can help ease the anxiety and frustration often experienced following a sudden injury and the resulting hospitalization.
The Denver Health Trauma Program is committed to supporting and growing the TSN by providing the programs and resources patients and families need to manage their recovery and improve their lives.
For more information about the Trauma Survivor Network at Denver Health email our site coordinator Maggie Savely at DenverTSN@dhha.org.
From 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., May 23 – 27, members of Denver Health's Level One Trauma Team will be outside the Good Day Café, Basement, Pavilion A, at Denver Health to provide information and resources highlighting the Trauma Program and the work we do in the Denver Community.
Learn more about Denver Health Trauma here.