June 2010

CIHI releases report linking injury to income

The Canadian Institute for Health Information has released a report, Injury Hospitalizations and Socio-Economic Status, that finds that people living in the poorest neighbourhoods in Canada are 30% more likely to be hospitalized with an injury than people in the richest areas. It concluded that if every socio-economic group had the same injury hospitalization rate as the most affluent group, there would have been 21,000 fewer hospitalizations in 2008-2009, which would have led to savings of $167 million in hospital costs.

The study found hospitalizations for falls, motor vehicle traffic injuries and injuries involving cutting or piercing by a household tool or other sharp object were highest in the least affluent neighbourhoods and lowest in the richest ones. In contrast, hospitalization rates for sports-related injuries were highest in the most affluent areas, possibly reflecting higher participation rates in organized sports. Falls were the most common cause of injury hospitalization in Canada, accounting for nearly two out of three injury hospitalizations. Rates were 50% higher in the least affluent neighbourhoods compared to the best off ones.

Updated June 15, 2010