Table 3

Information gaps in relation to the policy questions in Australia

QuestionKnowledge status in Australia, as an example
Is this a large enough problem that government should be concerned with?
What is the size of the population burden of sports injuries?Large numbers of cases, but mainly not treated in the hospital setting
How good are these data?Incomplete both in terms of population coverage and database coding
Has this burden changed over time?Not at the population level
Which sectors of the community are most vulnerable?
What population groups are most at risk?Young–middle aged, men, participants of football codes and activities involving forms of ‘active transport’ and children
Is there any evidence of health disparities in their distribution?Yes – disadvantaged and rural communities appear to have higher rates but reasons for this are unknown
Does this link to government policy priorities and targets?Yes, for health disparities and health promotion. Not clear how it relates to other preventive health strategies
Why should the government address the issue?
How much do they cost the community (ie, government)?Not clear, only ad-hoc estimates are available
What part of the healthcare sector bears these costs?Largely non-hospital/non-government
What would be the outcomes (including costs) of government not intervening?No information
Why/how can government lead/impose/influence solutions?Relevance to the health policy sector are largely unclear or not articulated well by the sports sector
What would be the financial and policy benefits of introducing solutions?Not known