Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Unintentional injuries over a 1-year period in a rural Vietnamese community: describing an iceberg.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Public Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5474-4361
2005 (English)In: Public Health, ISSN 0033-3506, E-ISSN 1476-5616, Vol. 119, no 6, 466-473 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

OBJECTIVES: To document unintentional injuries in a rural community over a 1-year period as a basis for prioritizing preventive activities. STUDY DESIGN: Quarterly home visits over 1 year to elicit experience of injury among household members in the preceding 3 months. METHODS: In total, 24,776 people living in rural communities in the Bavi District, Northern Vietnam, were surveyed in home visits during 2000. In the home visits, injuries that needed care or disrupted normal activities were recorded, together with their circumstances. RESULTS: Overall, 2079 new non-fatal injuries were recorded over 23,338 person-years, a rate of 89/1000 person-years-at-risk. Males had a significantly higher injury rate than females for all age groups except for those aged 35-59 years and the elderly (P<0.05). The elderly were at highest risk of injury (P<0.05), particularly females. Home injuries occurred at the highest overall rate, particularly among the elderly. Road traffic injuries were most common among children. Most injuries involved contact with another object. Less than one-quarter of injury victims sought care at a health facility. CONCLUSIONS: Community-based household surveys revealed the hidden part of the injury iceberg, as well as showing high incidence rates, indicating that injury is an important public health problem which should be a priority for intervention in rural Vietnam, and probably elsewhere. This comprehensive study is intended to contribute evidence and methods to the Ministry of Health's national programme for injury prevention, and to a wider audience.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005. Vol. 119, no 6, 466-473 p.
Keyword [en]
Injury, Surveillance, Vietnam, Community, Traffic, Accidents
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-30555DOI: 10.1016/j.puhe.2004.08.022PubMedID: 15826887OAI: diva2:284659
Available from: 2010-01-08 Created: 2010-01-08 Last updated: 2015-04-29Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Epidemiology of unintentional injuries in rural Vietnam
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Epidemiology of unintentional injuries in rural Vietnam
2004 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The main objective of this epidemiological study was to assess the incidence of unintentional non-fatal injuries, together with their determinants and consequences, in a defined Vietnamese population, thus providing a basis for future prevention. A one-year follow-up survey involved four quarterly cross-sectional household injury interviews during 2000. This cohort study was based within a demographic surveillance site in Bavi district, northern Vietnam, which provides detailed, longitudinal information in a continuous and systematic way. Findings relate to three phases of the injury process: before, during and after injury.

The study showed that unintentional non-fatal injuries were an important health problem in rural Vietnam. The high incidence rate of 89/1000 pyar reflected almost one tenth of the population being injured every year. Home injuries were found to be most common, often due to a lack of proper kitchens and dangerous surroundings in the home. Road traffic injuries were less common but tended to be more severe, with longer periods of disability and higher unit costs compared with other types of injury. The leading mechanisms of injury were impacts with other objects, falls, cuts and crushing. Males had higher injury incidence rates than females except among the elderly. Elderly females were often injured due to falls in the home. Being male or elderly were significant risk factors for injury. Poverty was a risk factor for injuries in general and specifically for home and work related injuries, but not for road traffic injuries. The middle income group was at higher risk of traffic injuries, possibly due to their greater mobility.

Injuries not only affected people’s health, but were also a great financial burden. The cost of an injury, on average, corresponded to approximately 1.3 months of earned income, increasing to 7 months for a severe injury. Ninety percent of the economic burden of injury fell on households, only 8% on government and 2% on health insurance agencies. Self-treatment was the most common way of treating injuries (51.7%), even in some cases of severe injury. There was a low rate of use of public health services (23.2%) among injury patients, similar to private healthcare (22.4%). High cost, long distances, residence in mountains, being female and coming from ethnic minorities were barriers for seeking health services. People with health insurance sought care more, but the coverage of health insurance was very low.

Some prevention strategies might include education and raising awareness about the possible dangers of injury and the importance of seeking appropriate care following injury. To avoid household hazards, several strategies could be used: better light in the evening, making gravel paths around the house, clearing moss to avoid slipping, wearing protective clothing when using electrical equipment and improving kitchens. Similarly, improving road surfaces, having separate paths for pedestrians and cyclists and better driver training could reduce road accidents.

In Vietnam, and especially in a rural district without any injury register system, a community-based survey of unintentional injuries has been shown to be a feasible approach to injury assessment. It gave more complete results than could have been obtained from facility-based studies and led to the definition of possible prevention strategies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Folkhälsa och klinisk medicin, 2004. 67 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 914
Public health, unintentional injury, community-based, surveillance, Vietnam, Folkhälsomedicin
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-322 (URN)91-7305-723-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2004-10-15, 135, 9A, Norrlands universitetssjukhus, Umeå, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2004-09-24 Created: 2004-09-24 Last updated: 2010-05-07Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full textPubMed

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Byass, Peter
By organisation
Epidemiology and Public Health Sciences
In the same journal
Public Health
Medical and Health Sciences

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 78 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link