new research reveals parents unaware of hazards in the home
Safe Kids Worldwide study shows families can do more to protect their children
With people still talking about the Nationwide Make Safe Happen Super Bowl ad that brought dramatic attention to the number one cause of childhood deaths, preventable injuries, new research released this week by Safe Kids Worldwide reveals the scope of the problem in a place most parents assume is safe: the home. Every day, six children die from an injury in the home, and 10,000 go to the emergency department for the kinds of injuries that commonly happen in homes. At Dayton Children’s every year, we see hundreds of kids in our burn clinic and dozens of children are rushed to our emergency department, hurt by a toppling television.
“Report to the Nation: Protecting Children in Your Home,” a report made possible by funding from Nationwide, is based on a survey of 1,010 parents across America. It explores what parents are concerned about and what they do ̶ or don’t do ̶ to keep kids safe in the home.
When asked what parents are concerned about in the home, drowning barely made the list, with only one percent listing it as a concern. Yet, every week a child dies from drowning in a bathtub. One in eight parents surveyed say they left their young child alone in bathtub for five minutes or longer. Reasons given? Getting towels, checking on other children and cooking.
- TIP Give young children your full and undivided attention when they are in the bathtub or around water.
While parents say they are worried about fire safety, and 96 percent report they have a smoke alarm, 14 percent said they never check their smoke alarm battery. Working smoke alarms reduce the risk of dying in a home fire by half.
- TIP Check smoke alarm batteries every six months to make sure they are working.
For children younger than the age of 1, suffocation is the leading cause of injury-related death. In a separate study among children age 1 and younger, Safe Kids learned that 73 percent of parents say they place items in the crib with their baby, including blankets, bumpers and stuffed animals, all of which can be suffocation hazards.
- TIP Keep cribs clear of objects, and make sure babies sleep alone, on their back, and in a crib every time they sleep.
Window falls are preventable, yet 70 percent of parents say they have never used window guards or stops that prevent these falls. Each year, 3,300 children are injured from falling out of a window.
- TIP Install window guards or window stops to keep children from falling out of windows.
Only 4 percent of parents expressed concern about poisoning, which is surprising, given that Poison Control Centers answer more than one million calls a year about children 5 and younger who have gotten into medicine or other dangerous products. In a separate study, Safe Kids found that more grandparents identified electrical outlets as a top safety issue than medicine, but 36 times more children go to the emergency department for medicine poisoning than for injuries caused by an electrical outlet.
- TIP Keep all medicine up and away, even medicine you take every day. Be alert to medicine stored in other locations, like pills in purses, vitamins on counters, and medicine on nightstands.
“Every parent wants to protect their children, and we found that parents consider their own home to be safer than most,” says Jessica Saunders, Safe Kids Greater Dayton coordinator and director of Dayton Children’s Center for Child Health and Wellness. “Sadly, 2,200 kids die from an injury in the home every year. The good news is, we know how to prevent these injuries. We’ve pulled together simple steps parents can take to protect their kids.”
“This is an issue Nationwide Insurance has been passionate about for more than 60 years, which is why we launched our Make Safe Happen program,” said Matt Jauchius, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Nationwide. “And this is why we are supporting Safe Kids Worldwide with a three-year sponsorship to extend its important work to keep kids safe from preventable injuries in the home. Safe Kids is a valued member of the Make Safe Happen Advisory Council, and this research will further inform and guide us as we work together to protect children.”
About Safe Kids Greater Dayton
Safe Kids Greater Dayton works to prevent unintentional childhood injury, the number one cause of death for children in the United States. Safe Kids Greater Dayton is a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations dedicated to preventing unintentional injury. Safe Kids Greater Dayton is led by Dayton Children’s Hospital. For more information, visit safekids.org or childrensdayton.org.
Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The company provides a full range of insurance and financial services, including auto, commercial, homeowners and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities and mutual funds; banking and mortgages; specialty health; pet, motorcycle, boat and farm insurance. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com.
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