A computerized kiosk to teach injury prevention: is it as effective as human interaction?

J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 2014 Sep;77(3 Suppl 1):S2-7. doi: 10.1097/TA.0000000000000317.


Background: An emergency department (ED) visit may be an effective place to screen and educate families about injury prevention. The purpose of this study was to determine if a computerized kiosk in a pediatric ED can screen families for injury risk and encourage them to make more safety changes at follow-up survey compared with an injury prevention specialist (IPS).

Methods: A prospective, randomized controlled study was performed with families of children younger than 14 years in an ED lobby. Families were screened for injury risk by computerized kiosk based on child's age category at triage (birth to 1 year, 1-4 years, 5-9 years, or 10-14 years). Families were randomized to receive either injury behavior instructions by kiosk printout or by IPS when answers to specific practices were deemed unsafe. Three weeks after intervention, families were telephoned to determine change in safety practices.

Results: Three hundred seventeen families completed ED kiosk screen at enrollment (172 kiosk, 145 IPS). On initial screen, kiosk families practiced 79.6% of behaviors safely versus 75.9% in the IPS group (p = 0.011). A total of 221 families (69.7%) were reached for follow-up (121 kiosk, 100 IPS). On average, IPS families improved their safe behavior responses by 8.3% versus 1.0% in the kiosk group (p < 0.0001). Significantly more families in the IPS group than in the kiosk group (36% vs. 23%, p < 0.03) used additional safety equipment after the intervention.

Conclusion: A computerized kiosk based in a pediatric ED can help screen families for their injury risk. However, to elicit significant behavior change, an IPS discussing safety changes may be more effective.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01958099.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Computers
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / methods
  • Humans
  • Information Services*
  • Male
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Wounds and Injuries / prevention & control*

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01958099