Friday, February 25, 2011

“Buckle Up For Safety, Buckle Up!”

Anyone remember that catchy “buckle up” PSA from the 60’s? Anyone? With motor vehicle crashes as the leading cause of death among those ages 5-34 in the U.S, the message can certainly still resonate even today.

Seat belts are the single most effective and easiest way to reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths. According to the National Highway and Safety Administration fastening your seatbelt can reduce your chances of injury by approximately 50 percent.

Everyone should take the life-saving measure and buckle their seatbelt. Period. And in case you’re traveling with little ones, here are a few tips to pack before take to the streets:
  • CDC recommends that children ages 12 and under should be seated in the back seat.
  • NEVER seat a child in front of an airbag because they are more likely to suffer more possibly fatal injuries with an airbag.
  • The safest spot to seat a child in the backseat is in the middle of the row.
  • Rear-facing car seats are ideal for infants till age 1 and front-facing car seats are ideal for children up till age 4.
  • Booster seats can be used till age 12, but remember to check weight and height requirements!

Driving can be fun when going on a road trip or a relaxing cruise downtown-but it can also be dangerous. Take these safety tips into consideration next time you get into a seat. Together, we can learn to live injury-free because, remember, safety is NO accident. To learn more about road safety visit our website at also check out these great online resources.

Friday, February 18, 2011

2011 Toolkit Just a Click Away

So you want to get involved in this year’s National Public Health Week? Great! Don’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered. This year’s NPHW team has put together a handy 2011 Partner Toolkit to get you on your way. And it’s just a click away. So don’t delay. Ok, we digress.

The toolkit (PDF) is chuck full of valuable information and resources on injury and violence prevention to help you organize an event, reach members of the media and meet with local lawmakers. Here’s a look at what’s included:

· Fact sheets
· Safety talking points
· Suggested community events
· Media outreach materials
· Tips for working with media outlets
· Suggested social media involvement
· Legislative information
· Resources

Each event, proclamation, retweet, post and online message is another step towards improving your health and the health of your community. Download the toolkit today. Also, make sure to stay up-to-date on all things National Public Health Week by following us on Twitter , Facebook and remembering to share our message with others.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Today’s guest blog is by Jessica Wehrman, communications manager of the American Association of Poison Control Centers. AAPCC represents the 57 poison control centers across the United States and works to educate the public about poison centers and poison safety.

You can’t have a conversation about public health without talking about poisoning.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, poisoning is the second-leading cause of accidental death in this country after car accidents. In 2009, more than 4 million people called their local poison centers, either to ask about poisons or report a poison exposure. Painkillers, personal care products and cleaning products were among the substances most often involved in poison exposures that year.

Poisoning is a very real and very present danger. It’s an epidemic with no signs of waning, but it’s one that offers easy and authoritative help: Poison centers.

You can connect to your local poison center anywhere in the United States by calling 800-222-1222. Poison centers offer free, confidential medical advice 24 hours a day, seven days a week and take calls in more than 150 languages and from the hearing impaired.

By calling 800-222-1222, you can, in the majority of cases, avoid an unnecessary and costly trip to the hospital. Calling a poison center is easier than unloading your dishwasher or ordering a pizza. And the peace of mind that comes from making the call is far more rewarding.

So why should you call? Many people only think to call poison centers if their child gets into the medicine cabinet. That’s one reason, but there are many other reasons to pick up the phone.

Call your poison center if:
·You’ve made a medicine mistake.
·You have questions about how two medicines might interact.
·You’ve been bitten by a critter.
·You’ve mixed household cleaners and are worried about the fumes.
·You have any questions about poisons or possible poisons.

You can also help yourself by working to prevent poisoning. Here are a few ways to do so:
·Have a working carbon monoxide detector in your home.
·Don’t take medicine in the dark or without your glasses.
·Read and follow the directions on the label before taking any medicine.
·If you have questions about the intended use of your medicine, contact your doctor.
·Talk to your doctor before taking natural or herbal supplements.
·Never use food containers such as cups or bottles to store household and chemical products.
·Store food and household and chemical products in separate areas.
·Keep products that could be poisonous in their original containers.
·Remember – there’s no such thing as “child-proof.” Still, make it harder for children to get
at possible poisons by using safety latches on drawers or cabinets.

Keep this number by your phone: 800-222-1222. When in doubt, check it out. It doesn’t have to be an emergency to call. Poison center calls are free and confidential, and in return, you’ll get advice from a medical expert. It’s one of the best deals in health care today. And all you have to do is remember to call. To learn more about poison prevention visit join APHA in celebration of National Public Health Week.

“The American Public Health Association encourages you to take action today and help keep key programs such as Poison Control Centers protected from sever budget cuts by telling your representative to protect public health funding."

Friday, February 4, 2011

Join us for National Public Health Week 2011!

Drum roll, please! APHA is happy to announce the theme of this year’s National Public Health Week, “Safety is No Accident: Live Injury-free.” We just launched our new National Public Health Week 2011 website, Join us as we celebrate NPHW, April 4-10, and work towards creating a safer and healthier nation. There are a number of ways you and countless public health advocates across the country can help promote safety and prevent injury and violence in your own community throughout the week. Get involved and help us make injury and violence prevention a priority in all areas of life: at work, at home, at play, in your community and anywhere people are on the move. Visit us at While there download logos, wallpaper, talking points, find an event in your area using our interactive map of events, sign up to become a partner and much, much more!

Here are a few ideas:

Host a National Public Health Week event. Identify officials who have been vocal on issues related to injury prevention and invite them to partner in a community event. Hold a child safety seat demonstration to ensure safety seats are installed correctly. Feeling chatty? Tune into APHA’s #NPHW Twitter Chat on Monday, April 4, at 1p.m. ET by including #NPHW in your tweet. Reach out to local media. Submit a letter to the editor about the importance of injury and violence prevention. Highlight the stories of local heroes who have made a real difference in improving the safety of a community. Partner with a local college or university to promote public health student day, April 8th 2011. Help promote safety and prevent injuries and violence across the nation by taking action within your community-Everyone has a role to play. Join APHA during National Public Health Week 2011 as we work together to create a safer nation.