Public Release:  Experts to focus on the science of gun safety

Symposium at pediatric meeting will address how to protect youths from violence

American Academy of Pediatrics

WASHINGTON, DC - Pediatric leaders and researchers will tackle the complex and often politically charged subject of gun violence during a special symposium on Saturday, May 4, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Washington, DC.

The symposium, "Protecting the Health of Our Children Through Scientific Approaches to Gun Safety and Violence Prevention" will focus on guns and youth, violent media, guns and suicide, the pathway to violence, and community efforts to prevent gun violence.

Among the speakers is Dimitri A. Christakis, MD, MPH, FAAP, who will summarize what science has to say about the link between screen violence and aggression and what future research should focus on. He also will touch on the disconnect between what science finds and what the public believes.

"Decades of research have established a link between screen violence and real world aggression. Our challenge is to translate these findings into actionable public health strategies," said Dr. Christakis, George Adkins Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington and director of the Center for Child Health, Behavior, and Development at Seattle Children's Research Institute.

The symposium will be held from 12:30-2:30 p.m. in the Washington Convention Center.

Topics and presenters include:

  • 12:30 p.m. - "Overview of Gun Violence and Youth," presented by Arthur L. Kellermann, MD, MPH, RAND Health Corp., Santa Monica, Calif.

  • 12:50 p.m. - "Violent Media - What We Know and What Do We Need to Learn?" presented by Dimitri A. Christakis, MD, MPH, FAAP, Seattle Children's Research Institute, University of Washington, Seattle.

  • 1:10 p.m. - "Guns and Suicide," presented by Matthew Miller, MD, MPH, ScD, Harvard Injury Control Research Center, Boston.

  • 1:30 p.m. - "The Pathway to Violence - Early Identification of Violence in Children and Young Adults," presented by E. Jane Costello, PhD, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C.

  • 1:50 p.m. - "Community-Based Efforts to Reduce Gun Violence and Keeping Guns Out of the Hands of Young Adults," presented by Daniel W. Webster, ScD, MPH, Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, Baltimore.

###

The Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) are four individual pediatric organizations that co-sponsor the PAS Annual Meeting - the American Pediatric Society, the Society for Pediatric Research, the Academic Pediatric Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Members of these organizations are pediatricians and other health care providers who are practicing in the research, academic and clinical arenas. The four sponsoring organizations are leaders in the advancement of pediatric research and child advocacy within pediatrics, and all share a common mission of fostering the health and well-being of children worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.pas-meeting.org. Follow news of the PAS meeting on Twitter at http://twitter.com/PedAcadSoc.

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.