Road Trauma, a socially accepted horror movie

BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 08 April 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:903
  1. Guy Mazairac, coordinator (
  1. mobile intensive care unit, Centre Hospitalier Régional Namur, Belgium

    Ihave the incredible good fortune to have been born in a rich, peaceful country. I know nothing of war or terrorism, apart from the images I see on the television news. But if television wars have any “justification,” then what of the war that I have to attend to—a war that kills every day? Absurdly, in my country, Belgium, a total of 1500 people die each year, with a cortège of thousands mentally or physically disabled. Worldwide, my war kills millions.

    I cannot count the number of dead or disabled people that I have dealt with over the past 20 years in the mobile intensive care unit or in the emergency room.

    Our hospital invests large amounts of money in staffing and equipment in order to improve the immediate on-site care of those injured in road traffic crashes. The hope is to minimise the consequences of major trauma. I know that this is not enough. For years our hospital has …

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