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Identifying Risk and Raising Awareness in Older Person Trauma: A Trauma Center Initiative

Kourouche, Sarah RN, Ms Nurs(Emerg); Curtis, Kate RN, PhD; Watson, Wendy Lynne PhD; Mitchell, Rebecca PhD; Rankin, Tiffany; Chong, Shanley PhD

doi: 10.1097/JTN.0b013e31822b7938

Injury among older persons is well recognized as a growing problem. We reviewed our level-1 trauma center trauma registry finding that the most frequent presentations among people aged older than 65 years were due to falls and motor vehicle crashes. We surveyed participants at two of our older person injury awareness seminars to identify risk factors. Participants at our out-reach programme have several injury risk factors including polypharmacy for which our programme content has been tailored. We discuss this in relation to the older person injury-prevention literature. Because implementing our out-reach seminars, older person trauma presentations to our trauma center have decreased slightly.

St George Hospital Trauma Service, New South Wales (Ms Kourouche, A/Prof Curtis, and Ms Rankin); UNSW Injury Risk Management Research Centre (A/Prof Curtis, Drs Watson, Mitchell, and Chong); Sydney Nursing School, University of Sydney (A/Prof Curtis); and The George Institute for Global Health (A/Prof Curtis), Sydney, Australia.

Correspondence: Sarah Kourouche, RN, MsNURSemerg, Trauma Services, Level 2, Ward block, St George Public Hospital, Gray St, Kogarah, NSW 2217 (;

R.M. was supported by the NSW Injury Risk Management Research Centre (NSW IRMRC), with core funding provided by the NSW Health Department, the NSW Roads and Traffi c Authority, and the Motor Accidents Authority of NSW.

W.W. was supported by the NSW Health Department.

© 2011 Society of Trauma Nurses