February 4, 2010 Contact: Matt Splett
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (573) 882-5663
COLUMBIA, Mo. — University Hospital’s George David Peak Memorial Burn and Wound Center is recognizing Burn Awareness Week from Sunday, Feb. 7, to Saturday, Feb. 13.
According to the American Burn Association, an estimated 500,000 burn injuries require medical attention in the United States every year. Specialists at University Hospital’s burn center say many of these burns are preventable.
“The best thing people can do is to have a healthy respect for anything that is hot and could cause a burn,” said Nicholas Meyer, M.D., a fellowship-trained burn surgeon at University Hospital.
|Nicholas Meyer, M.D.
Most burn injuries happen in the home. Burns can result from fire, scalding, touching a hot surface or electrical, chemical and ultraviolet sources. Often, simple preventive measures can ensure you and your family remain safe.
This year's Burn Awareness Week focuses on preventing gasoline and scalding burn injuries. Here are a few safety tips from University Hospital burn specialists:
- Gasoline is best used as intended, to power internal combusion engines.
- Gasoline and barbecues do not mix.
- Gasoline and brush fires do not mix.
- Priming carburetors with gasoline can result in an explosive situation.
- Store gasoline in approved containers not in the house.
- Test the temperature of the bath water before bathing infants.
- Do not allow toddlers to run bath water.
- Always supervise infants' and toddler's bath activities; grade school children should not supervise them.
- Set water heater temperature to 120 degrees.
- Children, especially infants and toddlers, should not be in the kitchen when meals are being cooked.
- Set up a "no-zone" around the oven and stove and urge kids to stay out of it.
Burn specialists at University Hospital treat patients of all ages in the hospital’s burn intensive care unit. The state-of-the-art burn unit features 14 private intensive care rooms, an integrated operating room equipped with the latest technology, a specialized treatment room and a rehabilitation therapy room.
The operating room features temperature and humidity controls, a sterile warm water source and portable equipment that can easily be rolled out of the room. Staff also can individually regulate the temperature of each patient’s room, an important feature for patients who may have lost the ability to regulate their own body temperatures due to severe burns.
Joining Meyer at University Hospital are fellowship-trained burn surgeon Boyd Terry, M.D., two physician assistants and a team of nurses trained and certified in the advanced critical care of burn and wound patients.
“We have everything in the unit that we need to provide the absolute best care for burns,” said Meyer.
University of Missouri Health Care’s network of hospitals, clinics and telehealth sites reaches across the state of Missouri. Each year more than 20,000 patients are cared for in its hospitals and more than 500,000 patients are treated in its clinics. University Hospital and Clinics, Children’s Hospital, Columbia Regional Hospital and Ellis Fischel Cancer Center are based in Columbia, Mo. University Hospital offers the area’s only Level I Trauma Center and burn intensive care unit. Children’s Hospital is mid-Missouri’s only comprehensive pediatric facility with more than 30 specialties. CRH provides the area’s most comprehensive medical team for women’s health and houses the Family Birth center and Level III neonatal intensive care unit. Dedicated solely to cancer, Ellis Fischel is the state’s designated cancer center and offers the region’s most comprehensive screening program. The health system also includes a long-term acute care facility, Missouri Rehabilitation Center, in Mount Vernon, Mo.
Nicholas Meyer, M.D. burn surgeon at University Hospital