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09.11.12

Accident prevention should be primary priority for public health – RoSPA

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has stressed the urgency of preventing accidents, which are responsible for more “preventable” loss of life than any other cause of death to at least the age of 60.

RoSPA has urged the Government to examine this crucial research from the ONS to transform their priorities on a global scale.

In considering the data up to age 75, it becomes clear that preventable cancers surpass the number of accidents, but after the age of 75 accidental death is second in the mortality table until people reach their mid-80s, when it falls behind cancer and heart disease.

RoSPA underlines the fact that accidents, unlike diseases which cause premature death, are easily-preventable yet receive no investments or national strategies. Consequently the charity is demanding instant action, including a demand for the Government to prioritise accidents, a demand for public health authorities to devote £1bn from existing funds to tackle the causes of accidents and a demand for the establishment of a task force to coordinate national action.

Chief executive of RoSPA, Tom Mullarkey, commented: “This stunning new research changes everything in public health, improving the life chances of everyone in our country.

“Taking all the factors into account, it is clear that accident prevention should be the number one priority for public health in this country. Aligning what we now see is the dominant cause of premature, preventable death with the most cost-effective intervention strategies presents us with a golden opportunity to save lives and reduce injuries on a hitherto unprecedented scale.”

The RoSPA plans to give the evidence, set to be published in a new document entitled the Big Book of Accident Prevention, to all members of every Health and Wellbeing Board in England, just before Public Health reforms take effect in April.

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