Facts on Injury

Unintentional and intentional injuries are a serious public health concern in Canada and around the world:

  • According to the World Health Organization, each year around the world, more than 5 million people die from injuries. This accounts for 9% of the world's deaths, nearly 1.7 times the number of deaths from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. Globally, road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds, with suicide and homicide the second and fourth leading causes of death in this age group, respectively (World Health Organization (WHO), Injury and Violence: The Facts 2014. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO; 2014).
  •  In 2016, 17,210 Canadians died as a result of intentional and unintentional injuries excluding complications of medical and surgical care).Footnote 1
  • Injuries (excluding complications of medical and surgical care) are the leading cause of death for Canadians between the ages of 1 and 44 and the fourth leading cause of death for Canadians of all ages.Footnote 2
  • In Canada in 2016/17 (April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017), unintentional injuries (excluding complications of medical and surgical care) were the 7th leading cause of hospitalization among all causes (excluding pregnancy, childbirth and the puerperium).Footnote 3
  • In Canada in 2016/17, there were 219,275 acute care hospital separations related to unintentional injuries (excluding complications of medical and surgical care).Footnote 2
  • Many non-fatal injuries result in impairments and disabilities such as blindness, spinal cord injury and intellectual deficit due to brain injury.
  • The Cost of Injury in Canada report estimates the total economic burden of injury in Canada at $26.8 billion in 2010. This estimate includes direct costs of $15.9 billion arising from health care expenditures and indirect costs of $10.9 billion associated with reduced productivity from hospitalization, disability and premature death (Parachute. The Cost of Injury in Canada. Toronto, ON; Parachute, 2015).

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Statistics Canada. Table 102-0540 - Deaths, by cause, Chapter XX: External causes of morbidity and mortality (V01 to Y89), age group and sex, Canada, annual (number), CANSIM (database). (accessed: August 13, 2018)

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Footnote 2

Public Health Agency of Canada analysis of data from the Canadian Vital Statistics: Deaths Database, Statistics Canada

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Footnote 3

Excludes Quebec. Public Health Agency of Canada analysis of data from the Discharge Abstract Database, Canadian Institute for Health Information.

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