If you build it, will they come? Using a mobile safety centre to disseminate safety information and products to low-income urban families

Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.
Injury Prevention (Impact Factor: 1.94). 05/2009; 15(2):95-9. DOI: 10.1136/ip.2008.018325
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To examine the utilisation-related outcomes associated with visiting the Johns Hopkins CareS (Children are Safe) Mobile Safety Center (MSC), a 40-foot vehicle designed to deliver effective injury prevention interventions and education to low-income urban families.
Utilisation-related data were collected when the MSC was accessible at a community health centre and at community events from August 2004 to July 2006 in Baltimore City.
Adults bringing their child for well child care at a community health centre and MSC visitors at community events.
Low-cost safety products and free personalized educational services are provided on the MSC, which replicates a home environment and contains interactive exhibits.
Perceived benefits of visiting the MSC; products and services received.
MSC visitors (n = 83) and non-visitors (n = 127) did not differ in sociodemographic and injury-related characteristics; 96% of visitors reported learning something new as a result of their visit and 98% would recommend the MSC. During the first 2 years of operation, the MSC made 273 appearances, serving 6086 people. Home child safety products accounted for 71% of the 559 products distributed; educational materials made up 87% of the 7982 services received. Car safety seats accounted for 23% of the products distributed; installations made up 4% of the services received.
This approach to disseminating injury prevention interventions holds promise for enhancing the appeal of safety information and increasing the protection of children.

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