Black Child Injury Deaths Highest The City

Intentional and unintentional injury death rates remain highest
among children living in high-poverty areas and Black children

May 25, 2016 – The Health Department, in its lead role in the New York City Child Fatality Review Advisory Team, today released its annual report which details child injury deaths over a 15-year period. Yearly numbers of injury deaths fell from 61 deaths in 1999 to 46 deaths in 2013. New York City’s child injury death rate continues to be substantially lower than the national rate (4 vs. 8 deaths per 100,000 children). Most injury deaths were unintentional. Motor vehicle and fire-related deaths, the two leading causes of unintentional child injury deaths, declined in the 15-year time period examined in this report. The substantial decrease in motor vehicle-related deaths among Black children is promising and contributed to reduced disparities in unintentional child injury deaths overall.  The report reviews trends in injury deaths among children ages one to 12 years in New York City.

While NYC children continue to have a lower rate of injury death than children nationwide, injuries still pose a risk to New York City children. From 1999 to 2013, there were 723 injury deaths among NYC children. Unintentional injury death rates have declined since 1999, however, rates are highest among children living in very high-poverty areas and among Black children. Overall, intentional (homicide and suicide) injury deaths accounted for approximately one-third of all deaths. Rates were relatively constant between 1999 and 2013, but increased among Black and Asian children. Rates were also consistently higher among children in high-poverty areas when compared to children in low- and medium-poverty communities. The overwhelming majority of intentional deaths among children were homicides, which have fallen from 73 (1999-2003) to 50 (2009-2013). Child homicide death rates remained highest among children ages 1-2 years, followed by children ages 3-4 years. Suicides among children ages 9 to 12 years old, while rare in NYC, have increased over the past 15 years. The number of suicide deaths rose from two from 1999-2003 to 13 between 2009 and 2013. This trend is similar to a citywide increase of suicide deaths among all age groups, as well as nationally among children during this same time period.

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