Shriners Hospitals for Children launches burn prevention program

Annual campaign, Be Burn Aware, focuses on increasing awareness

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

February 7–13, 2016, is Burn Awareness Week. During this time, Shriners Hospitals for Children will begin its annual burn awareness and prevention campaign. This year’s effort will once again use the theme Be Burn Aware, and focus on preventing burn injuries in the home because the vast majority of preventable burn injuries continue to occur in residences. Homes are the sites of thousands of burn injuries to children every year, including scalds, fire-related injuries and even electrical burns. Many of these incidents could have been prevented by following and implementing some basic safety tips.

Burn Awareness Week is Shriners Hospitals for Children’s kickoff of a yearlong educational campaign aimed at burn awareness and prevention that includes offering free educational materials via their website, beburnaware.org. The items are designed to be a resource for firefighters, teachers, parents and others concerned with the safety and well-being of children. Many of the items are available in both English and Spanish.

“Shriners Hospitals for Children works year-round to prevent burn injuries by providing burn awareness education,” said Kenneth Guidera, M.D., chief medical officer of Shriners Hospitals for Children. “Our 2016 Be Burn Aware campaign will continue to focus on teaching children and families ways to avoid burn injuries, especially at home. As part of the annual campaign, we will share information on preventing fire and electrical-related injuries, as well as those caused by scalds or other incidents around the home. Shriners Hospitals for Children hopes to reduce pediatric burn injuries through education, as many of these injuries are preventable.”

The campaign features two child-friendly characters, Boots and Brewster – a caped, cuddly bear and a googly-eyed teapot – who appear in activity books for children ages 3–7 and 8–12. The coloring pages, word searches, cartoons and other activities are designed to grab children’s attention and present the information in a memorable, age-appropriate manner. The campaign also includes various tip sheets and materials that emphasize prevention of scalds, fire-related and electrical burns. New this year is an animated video that kids are sure to love. In the video, the Boots and Brewster duo take viewers on an entertaining, educational adventure to help them become more burn aware.

“Our burn team is devoted to helping children with devastating burn injuries survive and thrive, and we are equally devoted to teaching parents, children and the community how to prevent burn injuries,” said David Greenhalgh, M.D., chief of burns at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Northern California. “We are constantly examining new ways to educate the community about fire danger and provide information on how to prevent injuries. When it comes to burn injuries, prevention is the best medicine.”

Actor Joe Minoso, star of NBC’s hit show Chicago Fire, is the national spokesperson for the Be Burn Aware campaign.

Shriners Hospitals for Children encourages everyone concerned with keeping children safe to visit beburnaware.org for important burn prevention tips and information on ordering the free materials.