Mass General creates Center for Gun Violence Prevention

Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital on June 10 launched a center dedicated to gun violence prevention under the direction of its pediatric trauma director and a physician researcher.

The Mass General Center for Gun Violence Prevention formalizes efforts begun by MGH clinicians in 2015. The coalition of clinicians collaborated across the Mass General system and with local institutions to apply a public health approach to gun violence. The Center for Gun Violence Prevention will continue these efforts, conducting research and advancing care, education and community engagement around gun safety and violence prevention. Its first project is a simulation training for physicians.

The center was co-founded by Peter Masiakos, MD, director of MGH's pediatric trauma service, and Chana Sacks, MD, an internist and researcher in MGH's general internal medicine division. It will be funded by a $1.2 million grant from MGH and $200,000 from Harvard Medical School.

"We as a medical community have a role to play in ending this public health crisis," Dr. Sacks said in a press release. "We hope to arm clinicians with tools to discuss firearm safety and violence prevention with patients, to conduct research to better understand opportunities for intervention and to be advocates for our patients and communities."

Dr. Sacks has publicly advocated for more research on gun violence prevention. Her cousin's son was killed in the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Mass. 


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