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Unintentional injury is a leading cause of death/disability, with more disadvantaged children at greater risk. Understanding how inequalities vary by injury type, age, severity, and place of injury, can inform prevention. For all Scotland-born children 2009-2013 (n=195,184), hospital admissions for unintentional injury (HAUI) were linked to socioeconomic circumstances (SECs) at birth: area deprivation via the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD), mother's occupational social class, parents' relationship status. HAUI was examined from birth-five, and during infancy. We examined HAUI frequency, severity, injury type, and injury location (home vs. elsewhere). We estimated relative inequalities using the relative indices of inequality (RII, 95% CIs), before and after adjusting for demographics and other non-mediating SECs. More disadvantaged children were at greater risk of any HAUI from birth-five, RII: 1•59(1•49-1•70), 1•74(1•62-1•86), 1•97(1•84-2•12) for area deprivation, maternal occupational social class, and relationship status respectively. These attenuated after adjustment (1•15 [1•06-1•24], 1.22 [1•12-1•33], 1.32 [1•21-1•44]). Inequalities were greater for severe (vs. non-severe), multiple (vs. one-off) and home (vs. other location) injuries. Similar patterns were seen in infancy, excluding SIMD-inequalities in falls, where infants living in more disadvantaged neighbourhoods were at lower risk (0•79 [0•62-1•00]). After adjustment, reverse SIMD-gradients were also observed for all injuries and poisonings. Children living in more disadvantaged households are more likely to be injured across multiple dimensions of HAUI in Scotland. Upstream interventions which tackle family-level disadvantage may be most effective at reducing childhood HAUI. Wellcome Trust, Medical Research Council, Scottish Government Chief Scientist Office. © 2021 The Authors.


Paul M Henery, Ruth Dundas, S Vittal Katikireddi, Alastair Leyland, Rachael Wood, Anna Pearce. Social inequalities and hospital admission for unintentional injury in young children in Scotland: A nationwide linked cohort study. The Lancet regional health. Europe. 2021 Jul;6:100117

PMID: 34291228

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