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Briefing Date:06/04/2013
Topic:Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES
Institute of Medicine and National Research Council
Committee on Priorities for a Public Health Research Agenda
to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence

*****

Congressional Briefings
Tuesday, June 4, 2013
253 Russell Senate Office Bldg. – 12:00 p.m.
and
441 Cannon House Office Bldg. – 3:00 p.m.

*****

on

Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence

by

ALAN LESHNER, American Association for the Advancement of Science and Chair, Committee on Priorities for a Public Health Research Agenda to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence, Institute of Medicine (IOM) and National Research Council (NRC), The National Academies

STEPHEN HARGARTEN, Medical College of Wisconsin and Member of the IOM/NRC Committee

JOHN RICH, Drexel University School of Public Health and Member of the IOM/NRC Committee

JEFF RUNGE, Biolog Inc. and Member of the IOM/NRC Committee

SUSAN SORRENSON, University of Pennsylvania and Member of the IOM/NRC Committee

In 2010, more than 105,000 people were injured or killed in the United States as the result of a firearm-related incident. Recent, highly publicized, tragic mass shootings in Newtown, CT; Aurora, CO; Oak Creek, WI; and Tucson, AZ, have sharpened the American public’s interest in protecting our children and communities from the harmful effects of firearm violence. While many Americans legally use firearms for a variety of activities, fatal and nonfatal firearm violence poses a serious threat to public safety and welfare.

In January 2013, President Barack Obama issued 23 executive orders directing federal agencies to improve knowledge of the causes of firearm violence, what might help prevent it, and how to minimize its burden on public health. One of these orders directed the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to, along with other federal agencies, immediately begin identifying the most pressing problems in firearm violence research.

To help identify important research topics, the CDC and the CDC Foundation asked the Institute of Medicine, in collaboration with the National Research Council, to convene a committee tasked with developing a potential research agenda that focuses on the causes of, possible interventions to, and strategies to minimize the burden of firearm-related violence. The committee’s proposed research agenda – designed to produce results in 3 to 5 years – focuses on the characteristics of firearm violence, risk and protective factors, interventions and strategies, the impact of gun safety technology, and the influence of video games and other media

These briefings were for members of Congress and congressional staff only. The report was publicly released on June 5, 2013 and can be found, in its entirety, on the Web site of the National Academies Press.

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