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Am Fam Physician. 2006;74(7):1228-1230

CDC Supports Vigorous Promotion of Child Safety Restraints

Although child fatalities from motor vehicle crashes declined from 1978 to 2004, partially because of the use of child safety restraints, nearly 1,200 children younger than 12 years died in motor vehicle crashes in 2004. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System-All Injury Program (NEISS-AIP). The full report was published in the June 9, 2006, issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report and is available at

The NEISS-AIP included data on injury and restraint use in children younger than 12 years who presented to an emergency department after a motor vehicle crash. The data showed that children who were unrestrained were twice as likely to have multiple diagnoses and more than three times as likely to require hospitalization than those who were restrained. Fifty-nine percent of the children were restrained appropriately, compared with 40 percent who were not. The CDC supports vigorous promotion and enforcement of appropriate child motor vehicle restraints to further reduce child fatalities from motor vehicle crashes.

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