5195.0: Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 3:15 PM

Abstract #12802

Prospective examination of burn prevention behaviors

Thomas E. Wasser, PhD1, Dan Dillard2, and Lawrence Kleinman, MD, MPH1. (1) Department of Community Health and Health Studies, Lehigh Valley Hospital, 227 N. 17th Street, Allentown, PA 18104, 610-402-2497, Thomas.Wasser@LVH.com, (2) Burn Prevention Foundation, 5000 Tilghman Street, Suite 215, Allentown, PA 18104

Introduction: Assessment of risky behaviors in a target population can steer the development and implementation of effective burn prevention programs. Methods: A survey of 320 adults identified during one day in public settings in the Lehigh Valley, PA assessed home safety behaviors including : smoking history, water temperature reduction, access to fire extinguishers, escape route planning, and flammable substance storage. History of fire was also assessed. Chi-square was used to assess contrasts. Results: Over 10% of the sample reported having had a fire in the home, and 26.9% of the sample had a smoker living in the house. Sixty percent of the sample reported that lowered water temperature settings. Four percent report not having smoke detectors. Households that had previously experienced fires were no more likely to practice fire safety behaviors than those without with regard to extinguishers in the home (82% vs. 76% p=0.358), fire escape plans (88% vs. 60% p=0.70), storage (26% vs. 22% p=0.583) respectively . Similarly, households with smokers: fire extinguishers in the home (76.7% vs. 76.8% p=0.98), fire escape plans (61% vs. 60% p=0.94), or water heater temperature reduction (63% vs. 64% p=0.88) versus non-smokers respectively. Conclusions: Burn prevention strategies are currently employed in many households, although there is room for improvement. Despite being at higher risk, neither smokers nor those with previous experience with a household fire are more likely to engage in burn prevention strategies. Programs should be targeted to both by the community and by higher risk groups.

Learning Objectives: 1. Discuss how evaluational data is used to modify program and media campaigns. 2. Describe burn prevention behavior and assessment with regard to hot water temperature reduction, fire extinguisher location, and home fire evacuation planning and practice. 3. Descirbe differences in burn prevention behavior as it relates to smokers and non-smokers as well as those households that have previouly had a fire as compared to those that have not

Keywords: Prevention, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA