During Burn Awareness Week, Feb. 1-7, the nonprofit Illinois Fire Safety Alliance reminds Illinois residents to think about burn prevention in their daily lives.
Burn Awareness Week provides an opportunity for burn, fire and life safety educators to unite in sharing a common burn awareness and prevention message in their communities. While the topic for 2015 is scald prevention, the IFSA stresses the importance of fire safety, cooking safety, and other measures that prevent burns to infants, children and adults.
“Through public education, we can reduce the number of burn injuries and the associated medical costs being sustained by people in Illinois,” said Philip Zaleski, executive director of the IFSA.
According to the American Burn Association, an estimated 450,000 burn injuries were treated throughout the United States in 2013 and approximately 40,000 hospitalizations were required for those injuries.
“Unfortunately, more than 3,000 people in the U.S. perish each year as a result of fires, burns and scalding liquids,” Zaleski said. “For the 96 percent that survive their burn injury, physical, psychological and emotional trauma may continue to be felt long past their initial recovery.”
Since 1982, the IFSA has worked with local, state and national groups and organizations to promote programs and distribute information related to fire safety and burn prevention, while also providing support programs for burn survivors.
The IFSA is best-known for its Camp I Am Me burn camp for Illinois children ages 8 to 16. The weeklong camp will be commemorating its 25th anniversary in June. Also, the IFSA hosts an annual Young Adult Summit as an extension of burn camp for people age 18 to 25 who have experienced a burn injury requiring outpatient treatment or hospitalization.
The third annual Young Adult Summit is a weekend retreat Feb. 20-22. It consists of a variety of workshops and activities that support personal growth, emotional healing, school, career, relationships and self-image. Topics include team-building, finding strength from within, establishing self-acceptance, identifying one’s potential and adopting a sense of independence.
To view more of what the IFSA is doing to prevent burn injuries and to help burn survivors recover, visit www.IFSA.org.