The quality of video information on burn first aid available on YouTube

Burns. 2013 Aug;39(5):856-9. doi: 10.1016/j.burns.2012.10.017. Epub 2012 Dec 27.


Aim: To evaluate the clinical accuracy and delivery of information on thermal burn first aid available on the leading video-streaming website, YouTube.

Methodology: YouTube was searched using four separate search terms. The first 20 videos identified for each search term were included in the study if their primary focus was on thermal burn first aid. Videos were scored by two independent reviewers using a standardised scoring system and the scores totalled to give each video an overall score out of 20.

Results: A total of 47 videos were analysed. The average video score was 8.5 out of a possible 20. No videos scored full-marks. A low correlation was found between the score given by the independent reviewers and the number of views the video received per month (Spearman's rank correlation co-efficient=0.03, p=0.86).

Conclusion: The current standard of videos covering thermal burn first aid available on YouTube is unsatisfactory. In addition to this, viewers do not appear to be drawn to videos of higher quality. Organisations involved in managing burns and providing first aid care should be encouraged to produce clear, structured videos that can be made available on leading video streaming websites.

MeSH terms

  • Consumer Health Information / methods
  • Consumer Health Information / standards*
  • First Aid*
  • Humans
  • Information Dissemination / methods*
  • Social Media*
  • Video Recording*