If you were made aware of a problem that was leading to the deaths of nearly 20 children every single day in the United States, would you react to that problem with some urgency? Even if you did not possess the skills or experience to help bring that number down, would you hope that there would be enough awareness with regards to that issue that the public at large would take notice and demand fast results on efforts to curb that trend? If you would, you would hardly be alone, and there is a problem that is killing that many children every day in the United States right now.
That problem, such as it is, is traumatic brain injuries. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette recently ran an article that discussed the fact that researchers from the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh at UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health have won $16.5 million from the National Institutes of Health to lead an international study that aims to come up with a standard way of treating traumatic brain injuries in children. A link to the full article can be found here. While the story is interesting and there is much hope that the researchers will be able to make tangible progress in their quest for formulating these standards, there were several other facts that appeared in it that were quite troubling. One example of a troubling fact is that 7,000 children in the United States die every year because of traumatic brain injuries. That's the equivalent of a small town, and it's also a number that's been trending upward in recent years.
Many of the causes of these traumatic brain injuries are consistent with what has always been at the top of this list, including:
- Car accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- ATV accidents
- Accidental falls
- Sports injuries
- Blunt force trauma from child abuse
If this study proves to be successful, perhaps it will bring this terrible number down permanently or at least begin to move it in the proper direction. Overall, approximately 1.7 million people suffer traumatic brain injuries in the United States every year, and nearly 500,000 of them are injured badly enough that they face the prospect of dealing with long-term disabilities. In addition, more than 50,000 people are killed because of this type of harm on an annual basis.
We have been representing clients as traumatic brain injury lawyers at the Scarlett Law Group for 25 years. We have seen firsthand the damage that can be done when someone suffers this terrible injury because of the actions of someone else, and we have also seen too many times the unbearable grief that families encounter when they lose a child to a traumatic brain injury. We hope that more people become aware of this extremely troubling statistic and that those who are concerned manage to find a way to get involved and help with the fight against this difficult medical condition.