Kidsafe Victoria opens new Community Centre at MCH

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The Victorian Minister for Families and Children, the Hon Jenny Mikakos MP this morning opened Kidsafe Victoria’s new Community Centre at Monash Children’s Hospital with the assistance of Sophy, Chloe and Harry.

Monash Health Chief Operating Officer, Martin Keogh said Monash Children’s Hospital is proud to work alongside Kidsafe Victoria to support them in education and advocacy that prevents injuries to children.

“We treat over 30,000 children every year at this hospital, and many of them are here because of unintentional injuries and accidents,” he said.

“The Kidsafe Children’s Injury Prevention Hub will be an asset for Monash Children’s Hospital, for our staff, parents, patients and visitors.”

Erica Edmands, President of Kidsafe Victoria said the opening of the new Child Injury Prevention Centre, made possible by many sponsors, is a major milestone for Kidsafe Victoria.

“The location at the Monash Children’s Hospital will provide parents, carers, hospital staff and early childhood services with central access to life saving information,” she said.

“For nearly four decades, Kidsafe has pioneered and promoted many areas in child injury prevention resulting in government policy. Kidsafe plays a vital role in community education, advocacy and the development of legislation, such as the existing conversation regarding pool barrier reforms in Victoria,” Ms Edmands said.

Melanie Courtney, CEO of Kidsafe Victoria said the new centre included four interactive Child Injury Prevention Hubs focused on home, road, water and safe play. Ms Courtney said the hub had been designed to engage both children and parents with interactive online safety games, dress up areas, safety demonstrations including a safe sleeping and child car restraint display plus a wide range of resources.

“The new Centre will increase opportunities to expand Kidsafe Victoria’s interaction with the community, as well as facilitate injury prevention initiatives in partnership with Monash Children’s Hospital.”

Kidsafe background

The Child Accident Prevention Foundation of Australia (CAPFA) was incorporated in the ACT on 5 March 1979 by leading paediatric surgeons and businessmen who were committed to providing a safer environment for children in the 0 to 14 age range. The establishment of Divisional offices in each state/territory followed soon after.

Child Injury

Approximately 150 children die and 58,000 are hospitalised every year due to unintentional injury in Australia. This means that more Australian children die of injury than die of cancer and asthma combined.

Every year in Victoria approximately 19 children die and over 100,000 are treated in hospital as a result of unintentional injuries. The majority of these injuries and deaths are preventable.

Common causes of child injury include:

  • Falls– from things such as nursery furniture and equipment (e.g. prams, high chairs, and change tables), household furniture (e.g. cots, beds, chairs), playground equipment and wheeled devices (e.g. bikes, scooters).
  • Hit/Struck/Crush– finger jambs in doors and household objects such as televisions and bookcases falling on top of children.
  • Transport – children involved in motor vehicle incidents, pedestrian incidents and driveway run overs.
  • Cutting/Piercing– cuts from glass and other sharp household items (e.g. knives, scissors).
  • Burns and Scalds– from hot tap water, hot beverages such as tea and coffee and hot food including soup and 2 minute noodles.
  • Poisoning– from common medications such as paracetamol and household cleaners (e.g. bleach, dishwashing detergent, toilet bowl cleaners).
  • Drowning – 20 seconds and a few centimeters of water is all it takes for a toddler to drown. Backyard pools are the most common location where Australian toddlers drown.

Victorian Minister for Families and Children, Jenny Mikakos MP and Chloe

Paramedic Sophy

Monash Health Chief Operating Officer, Martin Keogh and the Victorian Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos MP

Victorian Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos MP with Harry and Sophy

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