Due to budget limitations, NCIPC has a meager investment in the training of practitioners and researchers. Practitioner training generally refers to educational activities for clinicians or for professionals in state and local health departments, whereas research training generally refers to training of the pre-and postdoctoral students at universities. Practitioner and research training is conducted to a modest degree by NCIPC-supported Injury Control Research Centers, but because of the funding limitations described below, training is subordinated to research activities.
The committee's evaluation of NCIPC covers the following crosscutting topics: research accomplishments, priorities for future research, training, building state and community infrastructure, and nuturing the field.
The premier accomplishment of NCIPC is the development and support of the science base of injury prevention. Since its inception, NCIPC has sought to forge a research niche in injury prevention. Consequently, NCIPC's research on unintentional and intentional injuries has emphasized surveillance, risk factors, etiology, and evaluation of prevention programs. A prevention orientation also underlies NCIPC's program on acute care, rehabilitation, and disability. For example, with respect to traumatic brain injuries, the leading cause of death and serious long-term disabilities from injuries, NCIPC focuses on surveillance, whereas other DHHS agencies focus on treatment research and service delivery.
NCIPC has succeeded in generating important new knowledge through its support for high-quality research on injury prevention. NCIPC's contributions to research have been noted in comprehensive evaluations (Hersey et al., 1995) and in more focused evaluations of research programs in rehabilitation and disability, motor vehicle, and firearm research by its advisory committee (NCIPC, 1995, 1996b, 1997b). The committee wishes to draw particular attention to NCIPC's noteworthy development of a strong extramural program of investigator-initiated grants, including its support for injury centers and areas of research largely unaddressed by other agencies (discussed below). This discussion serves as a backdrop for the committee's recommendation for an expansion of NCIPC extramural research in several priority areas.
Extramural research. NCIPC is to be commended for its commitment to extramural research in areas essential to scientific progress in the field, but