The summer of 2020 was unique for many reasons – and unfortunately one of them was due to an increased number of all-terrain vehicle (ATV) accidents reported in children.
“We’ve seen at least six children under the age of 17 requiring hospital admission for ATV-related accidents since May,” explains Dr. Stephen Smith, an emergency physician at Hennepin Healthcare. “These injuries are preventable, and we want to remind parents to put safety first when allowing their kids to ride on or drive these fast-moving vehicles.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children under 16 – who are too young to have a driver’s license – should not be allowed to operate or ride off-road vehicles. In Minnesota, ATV operators born after July 1, 1987 and OHM (off-highway motorcycle) riders under the age of 16 are required to complete an approved safety course before riding on public lands.
“Rollovers, crashes, and falling off ATVs are some of the ways injuries can occur,” said Hennepin Healthcare Trauma Prevention Specialist Julie Philbrook, RN. “That’s why following safety guidelines and wearing helmets and other proper protection is so important.”
According to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, there have been 19 deaths associated with ATVs so far this year.
From 2014-2019, Hennepin Healthcare’s Pediatric Level I Trauma Center admitted 61patients with injuries related to ATVs. That’s an average of 10 pediatric patients per year who are age 17 and under.
“What’s alarming is that the average age of the patients we’ve seen so far this year is 8,” said Philbrook. “We understand that it’s important to have fun, but there’s nothing fun about a serious injury that confines you to the hospital – or even worse, one that costs a life.”
HCMC is a Level I Pediatric Trauma Center and public teaching hospital located in downtown Minneapolis offering a full spectrum of inpatient and outpatient pediatric care.
Hennepin Healthcare will make it easier for people to find non-narcotic pain management resources and will also offer a group medical visit model thanks to grants from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) as part of their Non-narcotic Pain Management Mapping and Demonstration Projects.
The first project will create the Non-Opioid Pain Alleviation Information Network (NO PAIN) that will identify and promote evidence-based pain management services and modalities in Minnesota that do not involve narcotics. This will include creation of a website to make it easier for people to find resources to help Minnesotans manage chronic pain without the use of narcotics. The project will also assess the barriers and facilitators to non-narcotic pain management.
“Our mapping work will provide an information resource for Minnesotans in pain,” said Dr. Arti Prasad, Chair of Internal Medicine at Hennepin Healthcare. “Specifically, we will provide statewide mapping of the comprehensive resources for non-narcotic pain management to equally empower patients and providers towards a path of ‘do no harm’ pain alleviation.”
Program leadership will also use the grant to create a group medical visit model for non-narcotic pain management. The Hennepin Healthcare Interventional Pain Clinic will offer group care over a two-year period, where patients with chronic pain will work together using didactic learning through themed topics, active learning in mind-body integration, movement and practice, and healthy eating. Patients with chronic pain will participate in these cohort sessions and provide valuable feedback on the effectiveness of the intervention. The pilot program will be led by a clinician and an RN/wellness health coach who are passionate about integrative pain management strategies.
“We are thankful to the Minnesota Department of Health for granting us an opportunity to serve the State through these two projects that are antidotes to the ongoing opioid epidemic,” said Dr. Prasad. “Our work will demonstrate that pain management and healing are possible without narcotics if these therapeutic approaches are introduced early to prevent the pain from becoming chronic and opioid-dependent. Our mapping study and website will become an information resource for Minnesotans in pain.”
The project team is being led by Drs. Arti Prasad, Richard Printon, Katherine Shafto, and Ms. Sophie Kurschner.
For more information, go to: https://www.health.state.mn.us/communities/opioids/mnresponse/nnpmgrant.html