Serious injuries happen to other people

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 51, No. 10, December 2009, Page 452 News

Each year, 400000 British Colum­bians are injured, and another 1200  killed as a result of predictable and preventable injuries. Every hour  47 people in our province suffer a preventable injury as a result of falls, motor vehicle crashes, poisonings, drownings and other activities.  

Preventable injuries are the leading cause of death for British Co­lumbians between the ages of 1 and 44, and claim the lives of more children in the province than all other causes combined.

No one wants to be injured. The trouble is, too many of us think that serious injuries only happen to other people. But they can and do happen to us—and to others around us—at home, at play, at work, and on the road.

Now there is a community of companies, organizations, and individuals who have come together to address this problem. The Community Against Preventable Injuries (the Community) is a new organization that has been established to raise awareness, transform societal attitudes, and ultimately change behaviors. Its goal is to significantly reduce the number and severity of preventable injuries in BC.

A registered nonprofit organization, the Community is governed by a board of directors representing organizations including TELUS, BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation, BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit, Insurance Bureau of Canada, London Drugs, WorkSafeBC, Pacific Blue Cross, and the BC Ministry of Labour and Citizens’ Services. The Community’s work is made possible through the financial and in-kind support of a wide variety of organizations that continue to sign on as partners.

In addition to the alarming human cost, preventable injuries cost British Columbians over $4 billion in direct costs. They are one of the largest burdens on our health care system, consuming funds that could be used elsewhere to address other critical health care issues.

Visit, or e-mail

—Ian Pike, PhD, The Community Against Preventable Injuries

Ian Pike, PhD. Serious injuries happen to other people. BCMJ, Vol. 51, No. 10, December, 2009, Page(s) 452 - News.

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