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Injury Control Research Centers (ICRCs)

University of California - Los Angeles

Jess F. Kraus, PhD, MPH
Phone: 310-794-2706
Fax: 310-794-0787

Southern California Injury Prevention Research Center
UCLA School of Public Health
10911 Weyburn Ave., Suite 200
Los Angeles, CA 90024-2884
Phone: 310-794-2706
Fax: 310-794-0787


Injury Center Success Story

photo: family reviewing earthquake plan

Updated Steps for Californians During Earthquakes

UCLA Center for Public Health and Disasters, California

"New research by SCIPRC shows that people still have misperceptions about how to stay safe during an earthquake. We are working to ensure that, if an earthquake occurs, California residents know that they should NOT move toward a doorway but that they should drop, cover, and hold on."
- Billie P. Weiss, Associate Director, SCIPRC UCLA SPH

Updated Steps for Californians During Earthquakes

More Success Stories >>

The mission of the Southern California Injury Prevention Research Center (SCIPRC) is to develop and support a multidisciplinary academic and community effort with the goal of discovering and understanding patterns of injury occurrence in high-risk populations and controlling the incidence and consequences of these injuries. Five specific aims are research, training, information dissemination, community activity, and evaluation and organization.

  • The research activities include eight core projects and eight smaller seed projects that address acute care, prevention, and rehabilitation. The strength of this research program lies in its breadth and the available expertise in epidemiology, public health, clinical sciences, biomechanics, and behavioral and social sciences. The diversity of the core and seed projects expands the SCIPRC's ability to identify, understand, and explain injury occurrence and to implement and evaluate programs addressing current injury problem areas locally, nationally, and internationally.
  • The second major aim of the SCIPRC is to strengthen its work in graduate-level training and professional education in injury control practice and methodology. The SCIPRC currently sponsors nine full courses on injury control and lectures in over 10 additional courses throughout the University. To this ongoing curriculum, we will add new courses and lectures as well as several new professional training opportunities.
  • The SCIPRC has a strong record in scientific information dissemination with more than 100 scientific publications and 150 presentations in the last funding cycle. We will continue to build on this record as well as add new information dissemination activities that directly address local efforts and needs. These efforts will include ongoing collaborations with the State and Los Angeles County Departments of Health.
  • The SCIPRC participates in community activities by conducting information-sharing seminars with collaborating community agencies, by serving on committees that shape the future of injury control in the area, and by providing technical assistance. The SCIPRC has become a prominent figure in local injury control initiatives, and we plan on building this presence in the next funding cycle.
  • We continue to monitor our progress with an administrative structure that ensures efficiency through well-developed protocols and frequent communication among all SCIPRC participants.

This current application includes the largest and most diverse research plan yet undertaken by the SCIPRC. We believe that this broad plan is feasible because the past 10 years have taught us to maximize the efficiency with which we conduct research and to streamline our administrative efforts. We have assembled a team of highly qualified and motivated investigators with whom we will learn and grow. We are proud of our achievements thus far and plan to continue to contribute important and timely information to the injury control community.


Project Title: Media Literacy as a Violence Prevention Strategy
Project Period: 08/01/04-07/31/09

Description: This project will conduct a multiphase evaluation study of the media literacy violence prevention curriculum, Beyond Blame: Challenging Violence in the Media. The study will be conducted in randomly selected seventh-grade classrooms in middle schools throughout Los Angeles County. The formative stage of the evaluation will test the age appropriateness and identify any shortcomings of the curriculum and source materials, determine the suitability of the teacher training program, and expand alliances between UCLA students and the middle school pupils involved in the intervention. The impact evaluation will test changes in knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors among study children; the concurrent process evaluation will assess coverage, integrity, delivery, and use of program intervention; and the diffusion evaluation will assess the dissemination strategies of Beyond Blame.

Project Title: Needs Assessment of Emergency Preparedness and Response Activities in California Schools
Project Period: 08/01/04-07/31/07

Description: Schools are an environment in which a wide range of medical emergencies may occur to children both in the normal course of events and as a result of extraordinary events such as natural, technological, and human induced disasters. During 2002 and 2003, SCIPRC began an exploratory pilot study of emergency preparedness in public schools in 12 school districts in Los Angeles County. Building on the information obtained, a population based needs assessment of emergency preparedness in schools in 100 school districts in California will be conducted using mail questionnaires with telephone follow up. The objectives are to describe the types of emergencies that occur in schools; to describe the intended (written) and actual emergency preparedness activities that exist in schools; to identify the types, methods, and perceived adequacy and inadequacy of training provided to school staff; and to examine differences in perceived and actual preparedness across school districts as defined by an urban rural setting.

Project Title: An Evaluation of the 2003 Scooter/Skateboard/Skate Helmet Law in Reducing Children’s Head Injuries in California
Project Period: 08/01/04-07/31/07

Description: The increasing popularity of non powered scooters, skateboards, and in line and roller skates among children in the United States has also led to an increase in injuries associated with these recreational vehicles/toys. To lessen serious morbidity and mortality due to head injury, California amended their state bicycle helmet law requiring children younger than 18 years of age to wear a helmet when riding non powered scooters, skateboards, and in line and roller skates. This state law was enacted on January 1, 2003. This study will evaluate the new helmet law's impact on reducing head injuries of children riding these vehicles/toys and to determine the level of compliance with the law. Findings from this research should help legislators and public health professionals determine the law's effectiveness and identify strategies to improve the helmet law.

Project Title: Evaluation of Existing Sports Injury Interventions and Countermeasures in High School Varsity Football
Project Period: 08/01/04-07/31/07

Description:The highest rates of injury in high school sports are reported in football. Little is known about what schools are doing to prevent these injuries of the effectiveness of current prevention efforts. This project, using a multilevel study design, will identify primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention measures in place in local high schools; measure whether these interventions affect the frequency and severity of injury; compare treatment protocols across schools; and estimate costs of medically treated injuries in selected sports clinics. The investigators will focus on two samples of football teams: those that are under medical supervision by a local sports clinic and those that are not.

Project Title: The Effectiveness of Rumble Strips in Reducing Motor Vehicle Crashes on Rural Highways and Freeways
Project Period: 08/01/04-07/31/07

Description: The objective of this study is to determine to what extent a physical modification to highway construction—rumble strips—reduces the incidence of motor vehicle crashes on rural highways and freeways. The study’s specific aims follow:

1. Estimate and compare rates of injury producing, two vehicle cross over crashes on roadway segments before and after the installation of centerline rumble strips. Rate changes will be summarized with rate ratios and confidence limits.
2. Estimate and compare rates of injury producing, single vehicle run off the road crashes on roadway segments before and after the installation of shoulder rumble strips.
3. Determine if rumble strip effectiveness is influenced by selected road and vehicle characteristics (i.e., potential effect modifiers). For example, if drivers of heavy trucks cannot respond to the warning of rumble strips due to reduced vehicle maneuverability, crash reductions may be less for crashes involving heavy trucks than for those involving smaller vehicles.
4. Determine the overall impact of centerline and shoulder rumble strips by estimating the prevented fraction among the exposed (drivers on roadways with rumble strips) and the preventable fraction in the target population (drivers on all rural highways and freeways that could be equipped with rumble strips in the states being studied).

*Please note: Not all projects may be listed.