An Emergency Department Intervention to Increase Booster Seat Use for Lower Socioeconomic Families
Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
© 2006 Society for Academic Emergency Medicine
Academic Emergency Medicine
Volume 13, Issue 4, pages 396–400, April 2006
How to Cite
Gittelman, M. A., Pomerantz, W. J. and Laurence, S. (2006), An Emergency Department Intervention to Increase Booster Seat Use for Lower Socioeconomic Families. Academic Emergency Medicine, 13: 396–400. doi: 10.1197/j.aem.2005.11.002
- Issue published online: 28 JUN 2008
- Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
- Received September 29, 2005; revisions received October 3, 2005, and October 31, 2005; accepted November 2, 2005.
- emergency department;
- booster seat
Objectives: To evaluate the effectiveness of booster seat education within an emergency department (ED) setting for families residing in lower socioeconomic neighborhoods.
Methods: This was a prospective, randomized study of families with children aged 4 to 7 years and weighing 40 to 80 lb who presented to a pediatric ED without a booster seat and resided in lower socioeconomic communities. Subjects were randomly assigned to one of three groups: 1) received standard discharge instructions, 2) received five-minute booster seat training, and 3) received five-minute booster seat training and free booster seat with installation. Automobile restraint practices were obtained initially and by telephone at one month.
Results: A total of 225 children were enrolled. Before randomization in the study, 79.6% of parents reported that their child was usually positioned in the car with a lap/shoulder belt and 13.3% with a lap belt alone. Some parents (16.4%) had never heard of a booster seat, and 44.9% believed a lap belt was sufficient restraint. A total of 147 parents (65.3%) were contacted for follow-up at one month. Only one parent (1.3%) in the control group and four parents (5.3%) in the education group purchased and used a booster seat after their ED visit, while 55 parents (98.2%) in the education and installation group reported using the booster seat; 42 (75.0%) of these parents reported using the seat 100% of the time.
Conclusions: Education in a pediatric ED did not convince parents to purchase and use booster seats; however, the combination of education with installation significantly increased booster seat use in this population.