Developing a Focused Scald-Prevention Program

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Abstract

Scalds account for a high percentage of burn injuries in young children. The purpose of this project was to use a formative evaluation process to design a pilot scald-prevention program for a high-risk population. The burn registry and U.S. Census were used to define a high-risk population. A total of 53 children younger than age 6 were admitted to a local burn center with scalds during a 4-year period. Cooking or food accounted for 84% of these injuries. A total of 21% of the patients resided in one zip code, representing an incidence rate of 23 per 100,000, which was statistically significant. Focus group meetings were conducted with parents in this zip code. They were queried about scald injury knowledge, prevention practices, and attitudes toward interventions. A prevention program was designed based on the findings. Workshops are conducted with high-risk groups in the zip code. Attendees consent to a home visit where prevention practices are assessed and taught. A pre/post test and home risk assessment survey is used to measure change. The Burn Registry, U.S. Census, and focus groups were complimentary formative evaluation measures that assisted in developing a targeted scald prevention project.

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