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WHO Releases Report On Global Spinal Cord Injuries

“The [WHO] says as many as 500,000 people suffer spinal cord injuries every year,” VOA News reports (DeCapua, 12/2). “People with spinal cord injuries are two to five times more likely to die prematurely, with worse survival rates in low- and middle-income countries, says a new report,” released Monday, RTT News writes, adding, “The report, titled ‘International perspectives on spinal cord injury,’ summarizes the best available evidence on the causes, prevention, care and lived experience of people with spinal cord injury” (12/3). According to the report, “males are most at risk of spinal cord injury between the ages of 20-29 years and 70 years and older, while females are most at risk between the ages of 15-19 years and 60 years and older”; “up to 90 percent of spinal cord injury cases are due to traumatic causes such as road traffic crashes, falls and violence”; and “variations exist across regions,” PANA/AfriqueJet notes (12/3).

According to a WHO press release, the report highlights several essential health, social and economic measures “for improving the survival, health and participation of people with spinal cord injury” — including “timely, appropriate pre-hospital management”; “acute care appropriate to the level and severity of injury”; “access to ongoing health care, health education and products”; and “elimination of discrimination in employment and educational settings,” among others (12/2).