UNINTENTIONAL injuries are the leading cause of death among people 1 through 34 years of age in the United States. Even among the next-oldest cohort, 35 through 54 years, deaths from unintentional injuries are exceeded only by deaths from HIV/AIDS, cancer, and heart disease.
A consortium of private corporations, federal, state, and local public health and injury prevention groups, and professional and voluntary community-based organizations is being created in an attempt to remedy this situation. Currently called Safe America, the effort "is an initiative that is going to make a real change," predicted Georges Benjamin, MD, deputy secretary for public health services in the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, at a recent meeting in Washington, DC. (Because of a dispute with a group with similar goals about the name, the name of the initiative is expected to be changed by the end of the year; the idea, however, will remain the same.)