The Genesis Social Welfare Foundation has issued a call for students to be more careful when riding scooters, especially with the new school year starting.
The Taipei-based foundation, the only organization in the nation that cares for patients in a vegetative state, says most of the young patients with severe brain damage at its 15 care homes were injured in traffic accidents.
Of the 38 patients aged between seven and 19 who are in a vegetative state at the homes, 22 became brain damaged in traffic accidents, with 11 of the accidents involving scooters.
Treatment and care for a patient costs NT$60,000 a month on average, a heavy burden for most families, the foundation said. It takes care of 573 such patients nationwide.
Lin Chin-hsing (林進興), chairman of a private spinal cord injury rehabilitation center in Taoyuan County, also urged young people to be more careful on the road.
He said up to 60 percent of about 1,200 spinal cord injuries in the country each year are suffered in traffic accidents. The average age of such patients is 27.