Paediatric Critical Injury Research Program

In 2013 Professor Kate Curtis joined with colleagues Professor Kim Foster and Associate Professor Rebecca Mitchell, and with the support of the Day of Difference Foundation, The Paediatric Critical Injury Research program was established.

The program will address three major gaps in paediatric trauma:

  • Describe the incidence of severe paediatric trauma Australia-wide
  • Identify the unmet needs of the parents of injured children
  • Explore outcomes of children following injury, linked to their journey from injury to discharge

This research is essential to establishing effective and sustainable interventions preventing injuries where possible, ensuring the delivery of the most appropriate care, and assisting parents of injured children as they navigate their way through the trauma journey.


Injury causes more than 1,000 children to be hospitalised after sustaining an injury every week1: double that of cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease combined2. Each year around 600 children are killed following injury, 520 children catastrophically injured3 (lifelong disability). Despite these devastating statistics, it is unknown exactly where or why these injuries occur which means we are unable to put measures in place to help prevent them.
Research from NSW has demonstrated that a seriously injured child was 2-3 more times likely to die if they did not receive definitive treatment at a paediatric hospital, one that cares exclusively for children4. We need to determine the causes of these poor outcomes so the best treatment pathway for children suffering major injury can be established and implemented.