In an article published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Todd Rasmussen, MD (DoD Combat Casualty Research Program) and Arthur Kellerman, MD (Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences) propose the establishment of an NIH institute dedicated to trauma and emergency care research.
DoD funding represents more than 80 percent of the federal government’s annual investment in trauma care research, the authors point out. “Although this arrangement ensures the military relevance of federal research on trauma care, it provides little support for civilian priorities and leaves the field overly dependent on DoD funding.”
Rasmussen and Kellerman reference the June 2016 report from the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, which calls for a National Trauma Action Plan that integrates civilian and military trauma care capabilities. Establishing an NIH for trauma, they contend, will help to “drive the number of preventable deaths after injury down to zero.”