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Canada Healthy Camps Study Update – November 2009

Posted on November 16, 2009 by spreston

In summer 2009, twelve Canadian camps participated in a first year pilot of the Canadian Healthy Camps Study to research health in Canadian camps by submitting weekly data online of illness and injury at their camps.

Several years ago, research began in American camps.  The preliminary results and data are beginning to supply useful information, which could be applicable to staff training or the review of procedures.

  • Both campers and staff were more likely to become ill at camp than to become injured.
  • Communicable diseases accounted for 42% of camper illness and 41% of staff illness.
  • Head injuries accounted for 29% of all injuries to day campers and 20% of injuries to resident campers.
  • Injuries were more likely to occur midweek (Wednesday and Thursday) and between noon and 6:00 p.m.
  • A significant number of finger injuries were reported among staff caused by knives used during food preparation.
  • In resident camps, failure to wear protective equipment was reported in 15% of camper injuries and 16% of staff injuries.

The Canadian Healthy Camps Study team is:
Jeff Bradshaw, President CCA/ACC
Stephen Fine, Ph.D., CAIS/Simon Fraser University
Charles Tator, C.M., M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.S., University of Toronto/UHN
Sandy Wells, B.P.H.E, M.Sc., Thinkfirst/Pensez d’abord Canada

The team is meeting in November 2009 to begin the process of amending the U.S. study to the Canadian context and also to identify and approach potential donors.

Consider participating in summer 2010.  Camps learned some valuable lessons after a summer coping with H1N1.  A thorough gathering and analysis of data will serve to provide better information to ensure the future health and safety of our campers and staff.

For more information on joining the study contact Dr. Stephen Fine sfine@alumni.utoronto.ca.

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