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BMC Public Health. 2019 Jul 4;19(1):872. doi: 10.1186/s12889-019-7227-x.

Domestic fire emergency escape plans among the aged in NSW, Australia: the impact of a fire safety home visit program.

Author information

1
School of Business & Translational Health Research Institute, Western Sydney University, Penrith, New South Wales, 2751, Australia. k.tannous@westernsydney.edu.au.
2
Digital Health Cooperative Research Centre, The Rocks, New South Wales, 2000, Australia. k.tannous@westernsydney.edu.au.
3
School of Science and Health, Western Sydney University, Penrith, New South Wales, 2751, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Domestic fire-related injuries and deaths among the aged remain a concern of many countries including Australia. This study aimed to assess the impact of a home fire safety visit project on domestic fire emergency escape plans among the 373 aged persons using multivariate analyses.

METHOD:

The study used data from a collaborative intervention program by three emergency agencies in New South Wales. It covered 373 older people at registration and 156 at post home visit follow-up. The five fire emergency escape plan outcome measures (participants having a working smoke alarm, finding out what to do if there was a fire at their home, making a plan to escape their home in the event of a fire, finding out how to escape their home in an emergency and finding out how to maintain their installed smoke alarm) were examined by adjusting for key characteristics of participants, using a generalized estimating equation (GEE) model that adjusted for repeated measures in order to examine the association between the home visit program and fire emergency escape plans.

RESULTS:

There were significant improvements in participants' likelihood of finding out what to do if there was a fire in their home [AOR; 95% CI 1.89 (1.59-2.26)], making a plan to escape their home [AOR; 95% CI 1.80 (1.50-2.17)], how to escape their home in an emergency [AOR; 95% CI 1.33 (1.07-1.66)] and how to maintain their smoke alarm [AOR; 95% CI 1.77 (1.48-2.12)]. Female participants were less likely to have a plan to escape their home in the event of a fire [AOR; 95% CI 0.86 (0.75-0.99)] and to find out how to escape their home in an emergency [AOR; 95% CI 0.71 (0.61-0.82)] compared with their male counterparts. Additionally, participants who spoke languages other than English at home were significantly less likely to have a working smoke alarm [AOR; 95% CI 0.88 (0.38-0.69)].

CONCLUSION:

Our findings suggest that home visit programs are able to increase fire safety of vulnerable and isolated older people.

KEYWORDS:

Escape plan; Fire safety; High-risk individual; Home fire; New South Wales

PMID:
31272445
PMCID:
PMC6609397
DOI:
10.1186/s12889-019-7227-x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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