NEISS & NHAMCS Provide Causes of Injury by Sex in U.S.

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U.S. nationally representative statistics on causes of injury are available through the annual National Electronic Injury Surveillance System All-Injury Program (NEISS AIP). NEISS AIP records only hospital emergency department visits for non-fatal bodily harm not caused by illness or adverse effects of therapeutic drugs or medical procedures. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) operates the NEISS AIP. The Office of Statistics and Programming, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), produces NEISS AIP statistics. Since no later than 2001, NEISS AIP data have been readily accessible to the public through the CDC’s online WISQARS service.

NEISS injury data rank causes of injury similarly to NHAMCS injury data. Both surveys clearly indicate that domestic violence is far from the leading cause of injury to women.

NEISS injury data differs in some respects from NHAMCS data. The NEISS does not include multiple visits to hospital emergency departments for an injury reported in an earlier visit. The NHAMCS reports all visits as a separate injury record.^ The NEISS doesn’t include fatal injuries, while the NHAMCS does. The NHAMCS, which encompasses illnesses and injury, includes medical mishaps as injuries, while the NEISS does not. The NEISS does not report visits without an injury-related diagnosis. The NHAMCS reports all visits. In NHAMCS data for 2001, 16% and 18% of injuries to men and women, respectively, lack a cause of injury. In 2001, NHAMCS reported about 30% more injury-related visits and about 20% less injury-related visited caused by violence than did the NEISS (see NEISS workbook sheet: comparison with NHAMCS).

The NEISS figures for violent injuries are better than the NHAMCS figures. In 2001, the NEISS sub-sample of injury-related visits for persons ages 15 to 44 has 229,147 observations. That is about thirty-five times as many as in the corresponding NHAMCS sub-sample. Throughout the year, injury-related visits to NEISS-monitored hospital emergency departments are entered on the day of visit into the NEISS database.^ That reporting arrangement connects NEISS data more closely to incidents of emergency department visits and probably produces better categorization of visits in the NEISS than in the NHAMCS.

To encompass fatal injuries, the causes of injuries dataset includes sheets on fatal injuries by causes. The source of these data is NCHS Vital Statistics System, via WISQARS.

Related datasets:

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