The AHA today urged Senate appropriators to support federal funding for research and education to reduce violence in communities. “Hospitals’ efforts to examine and curb violence would be bolstered by federal initiatives to research this critical issue,” AHA said in a letter to leaders of the Senate Committee on Appropriations. “The AHA believes all policy should be evidence-based and employ strategies that are proven to work. However, due to current restrictions on federal funding, there is little scientific data available to inform sound federal policy to stem gun violence.” Specifically, AHA supports focused funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health to study gun violence, as well as research for topics including hospital-based violence intervention programs, suicide prevention, community engagement and collaboration, and preparedness. “As cornerstones in their communities, hospital and health system leaders have the unique opportunity to lead initiatives to reduce the risk of violence and advocate for advancing safe, healthy communities,” AHA said. “We stand ready to work with Congress to find ways to enhance hospitals’ ability to address violence in their communities.”

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