Objectives: To determine the incidence of nonfatal school-related injuries in adolescent schoolchildren.
Design: Nurses completed a Student Accident Report Form (SARF) on all injuries in schools meeting standardized criteria from September 1995 to June 1996.
Setting: Six junior high schools in Kaohsiung city, Taiwan.
Subjects: 13,335 adolescents aged 13-15 in six schools.
Results: A total of 3,640 injuries were reported among the city's 13,335 students, for an overall injury rate of 27.3 injuries/100 student years. Injury rates were higher for boys than for girls at all grade levels. The seventh-grade students had the highest incidence rate. Injuries not involving other students accounted for nearly 64% of all injuries. Injuries occurring on the playground/gymnasium and classroom were the two most common types and were more than twice as frequent as injuries occurring in the hall or stairs. Contusions, abrasions, and swelling were the most frequently reported types of injuries. The body sites most frequently injured were the extremities. When exposure time is taken into account, injury rates were higher in the unsupervised areas of the schools.
Conclusions: School-related injury incidence among adolescents attending junior high school is higher than has been previously reported and should be recognized as a significant public health problem in Taiwan.