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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(2), 182; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15020182

Economic Conditions May Contribute to Increased Violence toward Children: A Nationwide Population-Based Analysis of Pediatric Injuries in Taiwanese Emergency Departments

1
Department of Emergency Medicine, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei 100, Taiwan
2
Department of Medical Affairs, Ministry of Health and Welfair, Taipei 115, Taiwan
3
Graduate Institute of Life Sciences, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 114, Taiwan
4
Biobank Management Center of the Tri-Service General Hospital, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 114, Taiwan
5
Department of Pathology and Graduate Institute of Pathology and Parasitology, The Tri-Service General Hospital, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 114, Taiwan
6
Department of Pediatrics, National Taiwan University Hospital and College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei 100, Taiwan
7
Department of Pediatrics, MacKay Children’s Hospital, Taipei 104, Taiwan
8
Department of Medicine, MacKay Medical College, New Taipei City 252, Taiwan
9
Department of Pediatrics, BinKun Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Taoyuan 324, Taiwan
10
Department of Pediatrics, Hsinchu MacKay Memorial Hospital, Hsinchu 300, Taiwan
11
Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, Taoyuan General Hospital, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taoyuan 330, Taiwan
12
Department of Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 December 2017 / Revised: 21 January 2018 / Accepted: 22 January 2018 / Published: 23 January 2018
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Abstract

Childhood injuries are unfortunately common. Analysis procedures may assist professionals who work with children with developing preventive measures for protecting children’s wellness. This study explores the causes of pediatric injuries presenting to an emergency department in Taiwan. This nationwide, population-based study was conducted using data from the National Health Insurance Research Database of Taiwan (NHIRD). Patients aged <18 years were identified from approximately one million individuals listed in the NHIRD. We followed up with these patients for nine years and analyzed the causes of injuries requiring presentation to an emergency department. Variables of interest were age, sex, injury mechanisms, and temporal trends. A total of 274,028 children were identified in our study. Between 2001 and 2009, the leading causes of pediatric injuries treated in emergency departments were motor vehicle injuries, falls, and homicide. The overall incidence of injuries declined over the course of the study because of reductions in motor vehicle accidents and falls. The incidence of homicide increased during the study period, particularly between 2007 and 2009. A moderately inverse correlation between homicide rate and economic growth was observed (correlation coefficient: −0.613, p = 0.041). There was a general decline in pediatric injuries between 2001 and 2009. Public policy changes, including motorcycle helmet laws and increases in alcohol taxes, may have contributed to this decline. Unfortunately, the incidence of homicide increased over the course of the study. Ongoing financial crises may have contributed to this increase. Multidisciplinary efforts are required to reduce homicide and reinforce the importance of measures that protect children against violence. View Full-Text
Keywords: pediatric injuries; unintentional injuries; National Health Insurance Research Database; NHIRD; emergency department; financial crisis; public health; economics pediatric injuries; unintentional injuries; National Health Insurance Research Database; NHIRD; emergency department; financial crisis; public health; economics
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Liu, Y.-P.; Hsu, R.-J.; Wu, M.-H.; Peng, C.-C.; Chang, S.-T.; Lei, W.-T.; Yeh, T.-L.; Liu, J.-M.; Lin, C.-Y. Economic Conditions May Contribute to Increased Violence toward Children: A Nationwide Population-Based Analysis of Pediatric Injuries in Taiwanese Emergency Departments. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 182.

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