Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

One in five child deaths in England preventable, as are many other types, study shows

Date:
September 5, 2014
Source:
The Lancet
Summary:
A new series of articles highlights the substantial number of preventable deaths in England. For example, 20% of child deaths reviewed between 2010 and 2011 (800 of 4601) were from preventable causes including accidents, suicide, abuse, and neglect. Moreover, the series reveals that death rates vary widely between and within high income countries and between different age groups. At an international level, a higher proportion of deaths in older children in the USA, Australia, and New Zealand are due to external causes.

The Series highlights the substantial number of preventable deaths. For example, 20% of child deaths reviewed in England between 2010 and 2011 (800 of 4601) were from preventable causes including accidents, suicide, abuse, and neglect. Moreover, the Series reveals that death rates vary widely between and within high income countries and between different age groups. For example, in England and Wales, death rates tend to be higher in the Midlands and north England and lower in the south and east. At an international level, a higher proportion of deaths in older children in the USA, Australia, and New Zealand are due to external causes such as homicides, accidents, and suicides compared with England and Wales.

Related Articles


"What these variations in mortality tell us is that more could be done to prevent child deaths across all age groups," explains Dr Peter Sidebotham, Series leader and Associate Professor of child health at the University of Warwick in the UK.

"Although some contributing factors are relatively fixed, including a child's age, sex, and genetics, many environmental, social, and health service factors are amenable to interventions that could lessen risks and help prevent future deaths."

The Series highlights a "persistent socioeconomic gradient" for child deaths, with children from deprived backgrounds significantly more likely to die than their wealthier peers [Paper 3]. Indeed, the five high-income countries with the worst child death rates (USA, New Zealand, Portugal, Canada, and the UK) are also those with the widest inequalities in income.

Worryingly, the Series indicates that health services do not always deliver optimal care for children and lives are lost as a result. For example, WHO estimates that 1500 more children die every year in the UK than Sweden due to poor health service provision. The authors call for better training of healthcare staff to improve recognition of serious illnesses and knowledge of best practice guidelines to reduce avoidable child deaths.

Much more needs to be done, says Dr Sidebotham. "It needs to be recognised that many child deaths could be prevented through a combination of changes in long-term political commitment, welfare services to tackle child poverty, and health-care services. Politicians should recognise that child survival is as much linked to socioeconomic policies that reduce inequality as it is to a country's overall gross domestic product and systems of health-care delivery."

The authors conclude that while this knowledge could be used to help drive prevention initiatives, a simple categorisation of cause of death on death certificates does not capture all the factors that contribute to a child's death or provide the information necessary to develop effective prevention programmes to protect other children [Paper 1]. "Child death review processes that are being developed in many high-income countries provide important details of the circumstances surrounding a death and can add to a greater understanding of how and why children die. To be effective, child death reviews need to conducted by multidisciplinary teams that share information about the circumstances of child deaths, with the goal of preventing future deaths and improving child health and welfare."

The series can be found online at: http://www.thelancet.com/series/child-death-in-high-income-countries


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Lancet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Lancet. "One in five child deaths in England preventable, as are many other types, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 September 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140905090426.htm>.
The Lancet. (2014, September 5). One in five child deaths in England preventable, as are many other types, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140905090426.htm
The Lancet. "One in five child deaths in England preventable, as are many other types, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140905090426.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins