Eye Injury Prevention

Did you know that 90% of all eye related injuries could be prevented simply by wearing protective eyewear?  Protective eyewear is recommended for household projects and activities around the home, for many occupations and different sports activities.  More than 40% of eye injuries that occur every year are related to sports and recreational activities.  In addition, eyes can also be damaged by sun exposure, not just chemicals, dust, or objects.  According to a national survey by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, only 35% of respondents said they always wear protective eyewear when performing home repairs or maintenance; even fewer do so while playing sports.

Jean Ramsey, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology and Pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine and a physician here at Boston Medical Center says “We regularly see children referred from the Emergency Room who have suffered an eye injury from organized sports such as baseball and basketball.  Oftentimes it is a finger in the eye, dust, or the ball itself strikes the eye.  These injuries can be devastating at times.  Protective eyewear would prevent nearly all of these injuries.”

For more information on eye injury prevention and different types of eye protection, please visit: http://www.geteyesmart.org/eyesmart/living/eye-injuries/preventing.cfm

Older Adult and Teen Driving Lecture – Lisa Allee, MSW, LICSW

Lisa @ MGH 2

We kicked off Injury Prevention Month on April 1st with an invited lecture provided to the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Trauma and Critical Care group on Older Adult and Teen Driving by our Injury Prevention Coordinator at Boston Medical Center, Lisa Allee, MSW, LICSW.

During her informative presentation, Lisa went over current statistics related to older adult and teen driving and provided information on what can be done to help reduce crashes and ultimately the death rates resulting from these crashes.

Did you know that approximately 15 older adults die, and 500 are injured every day due to motor vehicle crashes here in the United States?  Older adults accounted for 17% of all traffic fatalities in 2012.  Healthcare providers have an ability to help reduce these rates, along with friends and family members of older adult drivers.

Also, did you know that nationally, approximately seven teens between the ages of 16-19 died every day in 2011 due to motor vehicle crashes and teen drivers in that age group are three times more likely to be in a fatal crash than drivers over the age of 20? It turns out that speed, alcohol and lack of seat belt use are some of the highest risk factors for teen drivers.

Here at BMC we see victims of motor vehicle crashes day in and day out and the Injury Prevention Team is dedicated to research, advocacy and programming aimed at reducing these alarming statistics.

For more information on Older Adult and Teen driving risks and what you can do please visit the CDC’s website (Older Adult and Teen driving).


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Department of Transportation (US). Traffic Safety Facts 2008: Older Population. Washington (DC): NHTSA; 2009 [cited 2011 Feb 25].

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Traffic Safety Facts: 2012 Occupant Protection. Washington, D.C.: US Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: 2014. Publication no. DOT-HS-811-892. [cited 2014 Sept 8]. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811892.pdf.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Fatality facts: teenagers 2012. Arlington (VA): The Institute; 2012 [cited 2014 Sept 29].  http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/teenagers/fatalityfacts/teenagers

Four Ways to Advocate for Brain Injury Legislation

April is Injury Prevention Month and a great time to think about Brain injury awareness.  In Massachusetts in FY 2013, there were a total of 75, 489 hospital ED visits, observation and inpatient stays for nonfatal traumatic brain injuries and 840 traumatic brain injury related deaths in the year 2012.  According to Lisa Allee, MSW, LICSW, Injury Prevention Coordinator in the Section of Acute Care and Trauma Surgery at BMC, “Injury Prevention at BMC partners with the BIA-MA for brain injury awareness as well as legislative advocacy.” I encourage folks to see BIA-MA’s call-to-action to learn ways you can advocate this month”, says Allee.

The Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts (BIA-MA) has four ways you can advocate for brain injury legislative support in April.   Please RSVP to advocacy@biama.org on which events you plan on attending so we can plan for your support!

  1. April 7th, 10am – Joint Ways & Means Budget Hearing, Medford City Hall, 85 George P. Hassett Drive, Medford, MA
  • Attend the Joint Ways & Means Budget Hearing
  • If you would like, testify (2 minutes) on behalf of the brain injury community
  1. April 9th, 2pm – BIA-MA ABI Education Day, Massachusetts State House, Room 428
  1. April 13th, 10am – Joint Ways & Means Budget Hearing, Massachusetts State House, Gardner Hall
  • Attend the Joint Ways & Means Budget Hearing
  • State Legislators will be present to listen to the community
  • If you would like, testify (2 minutes) on behalf of the brain injury community
  1. Call your State Representative and/or State Senator:

For more details, go to the FY’16 Budget ASK

Courtesy of:

Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts

30 Lyman Street, Suite 10

Westborough, MA  01581

(800) 242-0030   (508) 475-0032

Talking to Medical Students About Violence

Recently, representatives from the Violence Intervention Advocacy Program (VIAP) and the Community Violence Response Team (CVRT), including Tracey Dechert, MD and Lisa Allee from the trauma program here at BMC, spoke to the Spectrum of Physician Advocacy Elective Course, a group of medical students committed to improving their knowledge on the social determinants of health and learning how to become effective physician advocates, fighting for health equity and advocating for social change. With full recognition of the devastating effects of injury and violence on the community, this group of students looked to expand their knowledge of the innovative hospital based violence interventions from the experienced members of these teams. A variety of team members were present to discuss their various roles and students had the unique opportunity to learn from those making a difference at all levels of the intervention. This session provided great insight for students about the barriers to effective care delivery created by cycles of violence and poverty. Students become aware of ways they can intervene when working with the trauma teams at BMC in addition to advocating for policy changes around the devastating effects of gun violence.

A little bit about Janet Orf, NP in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) at BMC


By: Boston Trauma Staff

Janet Orf is a Nurse Practitioner in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) at Boston Medical Center. She graduated with her BSN from State University of New York at Stony Brook and her MS from University of Maryland at Baltimore. She received her Acute Care Nurse Practitioner degree from University of Massachusetts at Worcester. She previously worked as a Critical Care Transport Nurse for Boston MedFlight for about 9 years.

She has been at BMC for the past 16 years working in various roles. Apart from working as an NP in the Emergency Department and now currently in the SICU she also has experience as a Trauma Program Manager for about 18 months. She is grateful for BMC for providing her with the opportunity to do what she enjoys the most. About three years ago she traveled to Antarctica for 6 months to be a Flight Nurse with the Raytheon Polar Services Corp. She brings a unique set of skills to BMC and her ability to thrive in challenging environments is a tremendous asset to the team. She is passionate about taking care of the sickest and complex patients.

During her spare time she enjoys traveling, hiking, renovating her home, and is an accomplished sailor.

Parents Are the Key to Safe Teen Drivers


10/20/14; Courtesy of CDC

Many parents don’t realize it, but the #1 threat to their teen’s safety is driving or riding in a car with a teen driver. The fact is, about 3,000 teens lose their lives every year in car crashes. That’s eight teens a day too many. The main cause? Driver inexperience.

CDC’s Parents Are the Key campaign helps to educate parents on their invaluable role in reducing risk and managing their teens’ driving behavior. Now, just in time for National Teen Driver Safety Week (October 19-25), CDC has launched a refreshed Parents Are the Key website, featuring new materials and resources in English and Spanish—including a Parent-Teen Driving Agreement.

We encourage you to visit the Parents Are the Key website, which we’ve designed to help parents, pediatricians, and communities keep teen drivers safe on the road.

Spread the Word

We ask that you please help us raise awareness of these resources during National Teen Driver Safety Week. Here are some sample tweets and Facebook posts that you can use:

Click here for more information