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  1. Geoffrey Hughes
  1. Professor G Hughes, The Emergency Department, Royal Adelaide Hospital, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia; cchdhb{at}yahoo.com

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THE COST OF PENETRATING INJURIES

The quickly aborted and much criticised recent proposal that victims of knife crime will be visited in hospital by the perpetrators of the crime was a valiant but naïve and misguided attempt to create good from harm. A recent study in Injury reports on the financial cost that penetrating injuries cause the NHS in England and Wales. Data were taken from the Trauma Audit Research Unit (TARN) which collates information from 121 hospitals: 1365 patients had penetrating injuries, 91% were male, their median age was 30 years, 73.2% of penetrating injuries were stabs and 18.6% were gunshots and >90% of the injuries were assaults. The overall hospital mortality rate was 8.3% and for stabs it was 7%. The projected overall cost to the NHS is reported to be more than £4 million each year.1 …

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