A national study of nearly 700,000 hospitalisations over the past 10 years finds injuries are the number one cause of death in children under 17.

That’s twice the number of hospital admissions as cancer, diabetes and heart disease combined, reports SMH.
Each year about 149 children die and 680,000 children aged 16 and younger are hospitalised from injuries.

For every severely injured child, at least another 13 children are hospitalised with minor or moderate injuries.

Falls from playground equipment – which account for about a third of all hospitalisation – led to over 55,000 children hospitalised over the 10 years between 2002-2012.

“The results are so alarming. It is clear we need to do something,” said Professor Kate Curtis, a co-author of the report and a professor of emergency and trauma nursing at Sydney University and a clinician academic in the Illawarra Shoalhaven Health District.

17 researchers and clinicians specialising in paediatric medicine and childhood trauma have called on the federal government to urgently establish a new national injury prevention plan.

“It is quite astounding that injury to children is the largest cause of disability and death but we don’t have a national prevention plan,” said Professor Curtis.

The 10-year study was published by Injury Prevention.

Has your child suffered a serious injury at a playground or park?

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  • Kids and accidents……part of life for parents isn’t it? My kids have had stitches thanks to accidents. No broken bones, lots of cuts, scratches and bruises though


  • Ummm, I don’t know that this is very accurate. Kids will always have accidents as they grow up as a result of poor cognitive and physical judgement. I actually think the number one cause of childhood death is brain cancer. But I guess it depends on the research and stats you are using.


  • Tend to agree with another mom on here that we should let children explore and play on equipment at an earlier age so that they learn resilience. Otherwise we might have to ban cars in the future so they don’t fall out of them or under them.


  • Maybe the playground equipment needs to be modified. It’s worrying to think that we send our kids out to play on the equipment never thinking they could be injured. Scary thought


  • This is a worry, thanks for sharing.


  • Was surprised by this, thought it would have been CHD!


  • I wish someone could show the stats from previous decades too. So often from older people, I hear that kids use to play on equipment that was extremely dangerous, sure kids got hurt but …..
    Just because your kids were lucky or you didn’t have contact with kids outside your little area, doesn’t mean there were only minor injuries and no deaths. These safety measures came about for a reason = To prevent the stupidly high incidence of accidents.


  • Playgrounds have been modified over the years to reduce injuries, so I’m surprised that there are still so many children getting hurt or dying.


  • I am not surprised as children do get injured from growing up and participating in sports and hobbies and other activities.


  • Yep, my 2 had a few injuries. A swing to the head, floating face down in the pool, a flying fix in the eye, dog bite, falling over……….the list goes on. Kids get injured no matter how vigilant parents are.


  • No injuries for us at the playground luckily. The only thing a little scary was that once my daughter (6 back then) once fell from the scooter and scraped her all nose.


  • I was lucky that my son was not a risk taker like some kids. He wasn’t adventurous at the playground and like the more sedate play options. His favourite was for me to push him on the swing. Whilst I know of many kids who have had playground incidents, we were lucky to miss that phase.


  • At the end of the day kids have tenancies to be accident prone. As a parent you just have to do your best to not let them do anything wildly dangerous.


  • No, none of our kids suffered serious injuries at a playground / park.


  • I think that safety of our kids very important to be serious about it


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