The green paper definition of an accident as an event which requires a visit to the GP or to A&E is 'interesting', says A&E specialist registrar Andrew Hobart. But he has his doubts.

'What you are measuring is not the number of accidents but the number of doctor episodes.

'To change that you can influence people's behaviour, but it's my impression that more and more people seek medical attention even for minor injuries.'

People will have to take more responsibility for their own health if the target is to be met, he believes.

Public health senior registrar Semira Manaseki believes the definition is 'acceptable'. 'It's six of one and two threes of the other. Measuring what defines an accident is very difficult. You have to have some measure, and this is as good as any other.

'How do you measure minor accidents? And if you just talk about deaths you lose focus. If you can help people reduce accidents so that they don't go to their GP, then that can't be a bad thing.'