Interventions such as speeding enforcement and formal swimming lessons for young children could potentially save more than 250,000 lives a year if they were implemented across populations living in extreme poverty in low- and middle-income countries, according to a new study from researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
The review found the most successful safety measures involved road safety, with speed enforcement saving more than 80,000 lives per year and drunk-driving enforcement, saving more than 60,000 lives a year. The next category was child safety, with formal swimming lessons for children younger than 14 years saving more than 25,000 lives and the use of crèches, or playpens, to supervise children younger than 5 years, saving more than 10,000 lives
The paper, published April 11 in Lancet Global Health, was led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit, which is based at the Bloomberg School.
“With such critical lifesaving findings, this new research represents a real opportunity to reduce the global burden of preventable deaths among the world’s poorest and most in-need populations,” said Dr. Andres I. Vecino-Ortiz, an assistant scientist at the Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit and the study’s lead author. “Where there is arguably the greatest need for help, this study shows something can be done.”