Background: Road traffic injuries (RTIs) are important health problems and increasing knowledge on their prevention-related issues can be credible. This study aims to assess beliefs and performances of students to prevent road traffic injuries and their related factors, using Health Belief Model (HBM).
Methods: This cross-sectional study carried out on a random sample of 500 fourth and fifth grades students of elementary schools in Hamadan city, west of Iran. The data gathering tool was a self-administered questionnaire designed on the basis of HBM constructs and also the knowledge and performance of the students in relation to prevent RTIs. To increase the accuracy of this study, the students’ road-crossing behaviors were observed in a simulated street in the school, using an observation checklist. Data were analyzed by SPSS 16.
Results: The mean age of the participants was 10.51±0.50. About preventing RTIs, the mean scores of the students’ knowledge was 64.139, and regarding HBM constructs, the mean scores of their perceived susceptibility, perceived severity, perceived benefits, perceived barriers and self-efficacy were 82.817, 82.453, 82.451, 89.917, 84.343 and 91.250, respectively. The mean score of the students’ self-reported performances about traffic injury prevention was 48.750 and the mean score of their observed road-crossing behavior in the simulated street was 45.000. The final model of multiple linear regressions showed that the students’ sex (p=0.001), their knowledge (p less than 0.001), perceived susceptibility (p=0.002), perceived barriers (p=0.032), self-efficacy (p=0.001), and their observed road-crossing behaviors (p=0.019) predict the students’ self-reported injury prevention performances.
Conclusions: Regarding prevention of RTIs, knowledge and performance of the studied students are undesirable. The study findings can help designing more appropriate prevention programs for them.
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