Plunket home safety scheme

Madoka Yamauchi and her daughter Mia McKenzie behind a safety gate given to the family by Plunket...
Madoka Yamauchi and her daughter Mia McKenzie behind a safety gate given to the family by Plunket. PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY
Southern families are to benefit from a new scheme to provide safety equipment for around the home launched in Dunedin yesterday.

Plunket and The Warehouse are providing free safety equipment, including outlet plug covers, cabinet locks, flat-screen TV straps and safety gates to young families involved with Plunket.

Otago injury prevention programmes co-ordinator Shelley Gorman said the programme was available to Plunket families.

The first safety equipment was given to South Dunedin resident Madoka Yamauchi yesterday.

Mrs Yamauchi said she was delighted with her new safety gate, which would be fitted to her kitchen doorway to provide safety for her daughter Mia (7 months).

Having a Plunket nurse visit and assess the house had been a simple process, she said.

As well as the safety gate, Mrs Yamauchi also received outlet plug covers.

Plunket national adviser on child safety Sue Campbell said home safety was very important.

``There will always be a Houdini.

``They could receive traumatic brain injuries from a fall.''

Statistics from Safekids Aotearoa showed more than 60% of all injuries to under-5s happened in the home. On average, 48 children under 14 were killed in the home every year, she said.

Plunket wanted to reduce those figures with this new initiative.

The scheme was available from Plunket across Otago and Southland.

The equipment could be kept by the families.

About $60,000 had been raised for the devices from local Warehouse stores, through the ``add a dollar'' campaign and in-store fundraising.

Ms Gorman said for a family to be eligible they needed an in-home assessment by a Plunket nurse, who in most cases would be able to provide items then and there.

 -  by Simon Henderson

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