National Academy of Medicine

NAM President Responds to Recent Gun Violence With Calls for Research

March 22, 2018

The National Academy of Medicine’s President, Victor J. Dzau, has authored three editorial pieces on promoting research as a crucial first step to developing effective policies.

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Below are highlights from each of the three editorials.

Good Gun Policy Needs ResearchScience
March 16, 2018
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Co-authored with Dr. Alan Leshner, CEO emeritus of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Drs. Dzau and Leshner state that “It’s time to stop the polarized ‘debates’ that lack a science base and turn our energies toward constructive, informed examination.” They cite the 2013 IOM/NRC report Priorities for Research to Reduce the Threat of Firearm-Related Violence and a 2018 publication by RAND Corporation on The Science of Gun Policy as existing research roadmaps that could be utilized to guide said research. Read the editorial>>

Public Health Research on Gun Violence: Long OverdueAnnals of Internal Medicine
March 20, 2018
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Co-authored with Dr. Alan Leshner, Drs. Dzau and Leshner call for the reinstatement of funding to support research into gun violence. They state, “It is time to bring the full power of science to bear to deal with this issue of such great concern to our country. We need researchers from different disciplines, including public health, social and behavioral sciences, mental health, and law enforcement, to work together to tackle this problem.” Read the editorial>>

Congress hasn’t banned research on gun violence. It just won’t fund it.The Washington Post
March 21, 2018
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Co-authored with Dr. Mark Rosenberg, the founding director of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Drs. Dzau and Rosenberg urge Congress to include funding for gun violence research in this year’s federal budget. They state that, “… viewing gun violence as a public-health problem worthy of research has a lot to offer, and can provide a way forward that brings together advocates on both sides of the gun violence debate.” They also note Rep. Jay Dickey’s (R-Ark.) amendment that has effectively curtailed federal funds being made available to support research into gun violence. “After the July 2012 mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., Dickey called for an end to the de facto freeze on federal gun research. … Dickey died in 2017, but we agreed with his call to action six years ago, and we know he would agree with us now that Congress should act to fund research into gun-violence prevention.” Read the entire editorial>>


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