Main Article Content

Prevalence, circumstances and consequences of non-fatal road traffi c injuries and other bodily injuries among older people in China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa

K Peltzer
N Phaswana-Mafuya
P Arokiasamy
R Biritwum
A Yawson
N Minicuci
J.S. Williams
P Kowal
S Chatterji


Unintentional injuries are one of the main contributors to mortality and disability in elderly populations in low- and middle-income countries. The aim of this study was to examine the annual road traffic and other bodily (not including falls) injury prevalence and associated risk factors among older adults across six lower and upper middle-income countries. A cross- sectional survey involving face-to-face household interviews were conducted in China (n=13,177), Ghana (n=4305), India (n=6560), Mexico (n=2318), the Russian Federation (n=3938) and South Africa (n=3840), resulting in population-based cohorts of persons aged 50+ years.  Measures included questions on injury, self-rated visual difficulties, alcohol use, depression treatment, sleeping problems, self-reported health status, and vision assessment using LogMAR (logarithm of Minimum Angle of Resolution) eye charts. It comprises rows of letters and is used to measure visual acuity. Results indicate that the overall annual non-fatal road traffic injury prevalence was 2.0% and for other bodily injury 2.1% (not including falls) across the six countries. The multivariate logistic regression analysis found that residing in a rural area, taking medications or other treatment for depression in the past 12 months and having a sleeping problem were associated with road traffic injury, while younger age, residing in a rural area, hazardous or harmful alcohol use and having a sleeping problem were associated with other bodily injury. Visual impairment was not associated with prevalence of road traffic injuries. This study provides the burden of non-fatal road traffic injury and other bodily injury and their associated risk factors across the six countries’ studies. The findings of this study improves the understanding of non-fatal road traffic injury and other bodily injury upon which policy makers, programme developers and researchers in public health can design strategic interventions to reduce these preventable injuries as well as improve safety associated with unintentional injuries.

Keywords: injury, traffic, ageing, China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russian Federation, South Africa.