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Review Article

Unintentional injury prevention and the role of occupational therapy in the Solomon Islands: an integrative review

Submitted: 19 November 2015
Revised: 6 May 2016
Accepted: 31 August 2016
Published: 21 October 2016

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Author(s) : Daufanamae BU, Franklin RC, Eagers J.

Barbara DaufanamaeRichard FranklinJackie Eagers

Citation: Daufanamae BU, Franklin RC, Eagers J.  Unintentional injury prevention and the role of occupational therapy in the Solomon Islands: an integrative review. Rural and Remote Health (Internet) 2016; 16: 3810. Available: http://www.rrh.org.au/articles/subviewnew.asp?ArticleID=3810 (Accessed 21 October 2017)

ABSTRACT

Introduction:  Unintentional injuries (injuries for which there is no evidence of a predetermined intent) are one of the leading causes of death worldwide, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Although evidence demonstrates unintentional injuries are preventable it is a public health challenge for many LMICs such as the Solomon Islands. Occupational therapists are well placed to contribute to injury prevention, as they have specialised skills to analyse the accessibility and safety of the environments within which people conduct their daily occupations. While the role of occupational therapy in unintentional injury prevention is well known in high-income countries, it is unfamiliar in LMICs, especially in the Solomon Islands. This integrative review aimed to explore the incidence of common unintentional injuries, and the burden in the Solomon Islands; and explore the potential role of occupational therapy in unintentional injury prevention in the Solomon Islands, based on current activities in LMICs.
Method:  Articles were reviewed from six databases (Medline, CINAHL, OTDBase, OT Seeker, Scopus and PsychInfo). Five articles met the inclusion criteria for the first objective and 15 articles met the inclusion criteria for the second objective. These articles were thematically analysed where themes and codes associated with the research objectives were extracted and analysed.
Results:  Unintentional injuries in the Solomon Islands reported in the literature included ocular trauma, falls from fruit trees and coconut palms, and road traffic crashes. Burden of injury reported was mostly associated with loss of productivity. Occupational therapists undertook rehabilitative, biomechanical, neurodevelopmental and educational roles in LMIC, focusing on tertiary and secondary injury prevention.
Conclusions:  This integrative review suggests that there is limited information regarding injury in the Solomon Islands. However, evidence is available in LMICs to suggest that occupational therapy services can play a potential significant role in unintentional injury prevention, demonstrating a need for establishing injury prevention within the occupational therapy role in the Solomon Islands.

Key words: accidents, injury prevention, LMIC, low- and middle-income countries, occupational therapy, Pacific islands, safety.

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