Online Program

Reducing the risk of choking in children: A MOOC (massive Open Online Course) to teach how to prepare food

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 : 10:10 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Dario Gregori, Unit of Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Padova, Padova, Italy
Luca Rosati, Prochild NPO - Protecting Children Association, Trieste, Italy
Solidea Baldas, Prochild NPO - Protecting Children Onlus, Trieste, Italy
Martina Marafatto, Border Studio, Trieste, Italy
Giordano Bianchi, Border Studio, Trieste, Italy
Hugo Rodriguez, Hospital Nacional de Pediatría Juan P. Garrahan, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Achal Gulati, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, Delhi, India
Giulia Lorenzoni, Unit of Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Public Health, Department of Cardiac, Thoracic and Vascular Sciences, University of Padova, Padova, Italy
To try to respond, at least partially, to the need for education initiatives targeted at adults supervisors, with an easy and accessible communication format, a Mooc (massive open online course) for disseminating information on these injuries, has been realized.

The project consists of a series of informative videos freely available on a dedicated website. The contents are intended for an audience mainly of parents, educators and childcare professionals.The videos are available in English, Italian, Spanish and Italian Sign Language and will be available in Portuguese, French, Arabic, Russian, Chinese and Japanese. The video contents are realized on the basis of data provided by the Susy Safe registry, a DG Sanco co-funded project started in February 2005, which was aimed at establishing an International registry of foreign body injuries in children aged 0-14. Currently, the registry has collected over 25.000 cases. The information regarding the foreign body details and the circumstances of the injury allows the identification of the food foreign bodies causing injuries with greater frequency. Presently Food bones, Nuts and Seeds and grains have the highest incidence, accounting respectively for 32%, 22% and 21%. Nevertheless, less frequent but more severe injuries, which can cause death, are those due to meat, sweets and other foods which share certain characteristics: shape, size, and consistency.

US and Canada International Guidelines for food preparation have been used as a basis for developing food preparation instructions. Following the recommendations provided by the International guidelines the videos provide basic information addressed to those who have the task of preparing food for children, explaining in a clear and as simple as possible manner how to reduce the risk presented by certain foods. With simple measures even the most dangerous foods can be safely consumed by children.

The project consists of five short informative videos (2 to 3 minutes each). In each video a specific topic closely related to the problem of food choking in children is clearly addressed covering a particular aspect of the problem: epidemiology, children anatomy, obstruction mechanism (partial and total), child's behavior at the table, food preparation. Each topic is presented by a field expert: a Professor of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, an ENT Doctor, a Pediatrician, a Researcher, a professional Chef de cuisine. Furthermore, people of different ethnic and social backgrounds (in many cases parents of young children) participated voluntarily to the realization of the videos.

According to the data offered by the Susy Safe registry, when the injury happened, 85% of children were eating while 12% were playing and almost 40% of injuries happened under adults’ supervision. These data show a lack of information and the need to implement specific educational campaigns targeted to families and supervisor, free and accessible to anyone, capable of reaching people from diverse ethnic, social and cultural backgrounds.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Basic medical science applied in public health
Biostatistics, economics
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Demonstrate the use of MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) technology in the field of injury prevention and family education. Explain why this format of information communication can be successfully employed in public health in order to reach people from diverse backgrounds. Identify the characteristics of the foods that present or may present a choking hazard and promote preventive strategies. Evaluate the use of the MOOC system with the purpose of applying it to other public health campaigns.

Keyword(s): Public health or related research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I'm responsible of an European project on choking injuries in children and several international projects targeted at educating families about such risks. In terms of the actual presentation, my group has been developing over the years innovative techniques to reach families for educating at reducing risks for their children.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.