Journal of Community Health

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 968–975 | Cite as

All-Terrain Vehicle Injury Prevention: Healthcare Providers’ Knowledge, Attitudes, and the Anticipatory Guidance They Provide

  • Charles A. JennissenEmail author
  • Gerene M. Denning
  • Shane Sweat
  • Karisa Harland
  • Christopher Buresh
Original Paper


All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) continue to be an increasing cause of injuries and deaths in children, especially in rural communities. More children die in the United States each year from ATV-related events than from bicycle crashes. The purpose of this study was to determine the ATV anticipatory guidance practices of primary care providers, as well as their attitudes, knowledge, and the barriers faced in educating families about the risk of ATV use. An electronic survey was administered to primary care providers belonging to state medical societies. More than 60% of respondents (Total N = 218) believed that ATV anticipatory guidance was important to provide to pediatric patients and their families. However, 78% stated they provide ATV safety counseling less than 10% of the time during regular pediatric exams, and only 12% stated they do so greater than 25% of the time. Families rarely ask providers for advice on ATV safety issues; 84% of providers were asked once a year or less. ATV knowledge scores were low (median score 2 of 12); however, those with previous ATV exposure had significantly higher scores. Many respondents affirmed insufficient knowledge (47%) and inadequate resources (63%), but the most commonly identified barrier was that it was not a routine part of their practice. Providers in the study demonstrated limited knowledge, reported multiple barriers, and provided little or no ATV safety counseling. However, they consider ATV anticipatory guidance important for their patients. Armed with increased knowledge and appropriate resources, providers could play a significant role in promoting ATV safety.


Injury prevention All-terrain vehicles Primary health care Anticipatory guidance Safety Counseling 



Funding for this study was provided by the University of Iowa Department of Emergency Medicine and by a grant awarded to Dr. Charles Jennissen by the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health (GPCAH). We would like to acknowledge the Iowa Academy of Family Physicians, the Iowa Nurse Practitioner Society, the Iowa Association of Nurse Practitioners, the Iowa Physician’s Assistant Society, and the Iowa Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics for their assistance in conducting our study. We would also like to thank members of the Johnson County Safe Kids Coalition ATV task force for their assistance in developing the survey tool. The principal investigator had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles A. Jennissen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gerene M. Denning
    • 1
  • Shane Sweat
    • 1
  • Karisa Harland
    • 1
    • 2
  • Christopher Buresh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Emergency MedicineRoy J and Lucille A Carver College of Medicine, University of Iowa Hospitals and ClinicsIowa CityUSA
  2. 2.Injury Prevention Research CenterCollege of Public Health, University of IowaIowa CityUSA

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