Burn injury in recent arrivals to Tasmania

Miss Sarah Sproule1, Miss  Rebecca Schrale1

1Tasmanian Burns Unit, Royal Hobart Hospital , Hobart , Australia


Aim: Reduce the number of burn injuries presenting to the Tasmanian Burns Unit at the Royal Hobart Hospital (RHH) in patients who have recently arrived in Australia on a visa or as a refugee. Provide a prevention strategy using local partners. Direct education needs specific to this population group to ultimately assist in decreasing the amount of burn injuries and severity through appropriate first aid.

Method: A local audit was conducted using the Burns Registry of Australia and New Zealand and the digital medical record at the RHH to review the number of presentations that occurred where the patient was born outside of Australia, or whose parents were on a visa when the child was born from 2018-2020. The audit included the following data fields: age group, mechanism of injury, country of origin, first aid and medical insurance details.

Results: The results showed that international students and skilled migrants were the two groups of concern with the highest rate of burn injury presentations. Prevention strategies were therefore directed at these two groups. For KidSafe Burns Awareness Month in June 2021 a 60 second animation video and posters translated into Nepali and Mandarin were created. The animation focused on prevention of burns when cooking in simplified English and appropriate burns first aid. An advertising and public relations company was used to target the specific demographic by using a social media solution. We hope that this will become a national resource and a key aid in prevention of burns amongst this population.


Rebecca Schrale is the Burns Clinical Nurse Consultant at the Royal Hobart Hospital with over 20 years experience in the area. Rebecca is also a Nurse Practitioner specialising in Burns.

Sarah Sproule is a Burns Nurse at the Royal Hobart Hospital Burns Unit. Sarah worked alongside Rebecca for 3 months developing the prevention initiative.

Recent Comments