Health warn­ing for kids this Christ­mas

Balonne Beacon - - NEWS -

IN THE lead-up to Christ­mas, health author­i­ties have is­sued a call for com­mon sense to avoid a visit to the emer­gency de­part­ment dur­ing the fes­tive sea­son.

South West Hos­pi­tal and Health Ser­vice ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of med­i­cal ser­vices Dr Chris Buck said risk­tak­ing be­hav­iour seemed to in­crease over the Christ­mas­new year school hol­i­day pe­riod.

Dr Buck said 700 chil­dren aged 16 years and un­der pre­sented to the re­gion’s main emer­gency de­part­ments dur­ing the pre­vi­ous Christ­mas-new year school hol­i­day pe­riod, be­tween De­cem­ber 11, 2016 and Jan­uary 22, 2017.

These pre­sen­ta­tions in­cluded 276 at Roma Hos­pi­tal, 202 at St Ge­orge Hos­pi­tal, 163 at Charleville Hos­pi­tal and 59 at Cun­na­mulla Hos­pi­tal.

Dr Buck said strains, sprains, cuts, bruises and gas­troen­teri­tis, along with the oc­ca­sional open wound and frac­ture, topped the list of chil­dren’s pre­sen­ta­tions dur­ing the Christ­mas school hol­i­day pe­riod.

“We also had a num­ber of chil­dren pre­sent­ing with var­i­ous mid­dle ear in­fec­tions,” he said.

“When fin­ished swim­ming, it’s im­por­tant to en­sure ears are dried thor­oughly to min­imise the risk of in­fec­tion.

“And never leave chil­dren – or an­i­mals – unattended in cars in the heat. (It) can be fa­tal in a sur­pris­ingly short pe­riod of time.”

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