Scientific Publications on Firearms in Youth Before and After Congressional Action Prohibiting Federal Research Funding

Ladapo, Joseph, Benjamin Rodwin, Andrew M. Ryan, Leonardo Trasande, Jan Blustein
JAMA [Journal of the American Medical Association];310(5): 532-533.

In January 1996, Congress passed an appropriations bill amendment prohibiting the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from using “funds made available for injury prevention … to advocate or promote gun control.” This provision was triggered by evidence linking gun ownership to health harms, created uncertainty among CDC officials and researchers about what could be studied, and led to significant declines in funding. We evaluated the change in the number of publications on firearms in youth compared with research on other leading causes of death before and after the Congressional action. We focused on children and adolescents because they disproportionately experience gun violence and injury.