Columbus, OH (PRWEB) February 24, 2014
PACT for Safe Driving, a program that is designed to involve pediatricians and parents in the process of better preparing teens for the responsibility of driving, was launched earlier this month at Ohio AAP’s annual Executive Roundtable Meeting.
The program, made possible by a grant from the Allstate Foundation, is centered around a website (http://ohioaap.org/teendriving/) that includes data and statistics, risk factors associated with teen driving, information about Ohio’s Graduated Driver’s License Laws (GDL), and a parent-teen driving contract.
The statistics paint a sobering picture of the need to raise awareness about the risks associated with teen driving and develop interventions to address the problem:
- Nationally, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for 16-20 year olds, causing approximately 6000 fatalities annually. This accounts for more than 40% of all deaths in this age population from all causes.
- Each year, approximately 450,000 teens across the nation are injured and 27,000 of them require hospitalization.
- Within the 16-19 year old range, the youngest drivers have the highest risk. The crash rate for 16-year-olds is much higher even than that for 17-year-olds and is almost nine times greater than that of the general population of drivers.
“Research shows that parents who set rules and monitor their teens driving in a helpful, supportive way can reduce the risk of their child being involved in a crash,” said Dr. Mike Gittelman, MD FAAP, emergency medicine physician at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and chair of the AAP Ohio Injury Prevention Committee. “Pediatricians have a unique opportunity to address this difficult and very important safety issue by talking to their teen patients and their parents, making them aware of the risks and encouraging their use of the parent-teen driving contract.”
With outreach through traditional and social media channels, as well as through pediatricians, family practice physicians and children’s hospitals, Ohio AAP hopes to reach thousands of Ohio families with these important safety messages; and ultimately, make Ohio’s teen drivers safer.
The Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (Ohio AAP) promotes the health, safety and well-being of children and adolescents so they may reach their full potential. The Ohio AAP works to accomplish this by addressing the needs of children, their families, and their communities, and by supporting Chapter members through advocacy, education, research, service, and improving the systems through which they deliver pediatric care.
MEDIA CONTACT: Jill Buterbaugh, 614/326-9054, jill (at) krilecommunications (dot) com