August 2022 | Issue 43


A farewell from our Director, calling for a new PISC exploratory grant, and the Penn Community Scholars Program application now open to community organizations.
UPenn Injury Science Center Logo

A Message from Doug Wiebe

Dear PISC Community,

August 31st will be my last day as Director of the Penn Injury Science Center and my final day at Penn. The date marks 20 years to the day since I came to Penn to join Drs. C. William Schwab, Terry Richmond, and Charlie Branas at the Firearm & Injury Center at Penn, the predecessor to what has become our CDC-funded, highly collaborative, campus-wide community dedicated to high-caliber science to help target primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention efforts – STOP IT, FIX IT, LIVE ON – at the right place and right time.
I am writing to thank these mentors who invested in me and express my gratitude to all the colleagues, trainees, and friends I have worked with during this journey.

I have loved my time at PISC, and benefited tremendously from the energy, creativity, and dedication that you bring to your work. In particular I have benefited from your generosity of scientific thought that I see as a defining feature of what makes the PISC community so fertile for supporting people to start and to thrive in careers dedicated to injury science, and to changing places and policies to make communities healthy and people safer.
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Dr. Wiebe joined Penn in 2002 and served as the PISC Director since 2017
I am moving to join the injury prevention community at the University of Michigan where I look forward to new challenges and new opportunities. I will enjoy seeing PISC continue to evolve and to hone its approaches to address local and national injury prevention priorities in this exciting new era led by incoming PISC Co-Directors, Drs. Zack Meisel and Kate McDonald.
Doug Wiebe, PhD

The Penn Injury Science Center wholeheartedly thanks Dr. Wiebe for his years of leadership and dedication!

doug talking at pisc retreat
Dr. Wiebe led PISC's successful application to become a comprehensive center, funded by the CDC. Here he is pictured at the 2019 PISC Retreat, providing a summary of the application.
doug in botswana with group
Dr. Wiebe served as the Director of the Injury and Trauma Research Training Program for Botswana from 2016-2022. Here he is pictured in Botswana with the trainees and his fellow mentors.
Dr. Wiebe frequently served as a guest speaker for the Penn Community Scholars, a program which helps community organizations enhance their knowledge and skills to be equal partners in research, where he was a crowd favorite for making the research process approachable. He is pictured here as a judge in the annual culminating symposium of the program where Scholars "pitch" their program to academics and funders.

Thank you, Doug!

We wish you the very best

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Neighborhoods Together 2 (1)

Neighborhoods Together 2 Generations Together

Saturday, September 17th
6000 Block of Kingsessing Avenue

Through the PHIGHT Network, PISC will be hosting a street event in West Philadelphia with the Beloved Care Project to honor those lost to violence and gun violence, while also bringing resources and recreation to the community. Show support for your neighbors and fellow Philadelphians by attending for free or by purchasing a sponsorship package.

For questions or if you're interested in "tabling" the event, contact Sara Solomon 215-290-8454 or
national firearm conference

National Research Conference on Firearm Injury

November 29th-December 1st
Washington, DC

The 2022 National Research Conference on Firearm Injury Prevention will highlight the current state of the science and research on firearm injury prevention across the lifespan.
Abstract submissions are now closed, but registration is open!


Call for Papers: Special Issue, Prevention Science

The NIH Office of Disease Prevention (ODP) is sponsoring a special issue in Prevention Science, entitled "Design and Analytic Methods to Evaluate Multilevel Interventions to Reduce Health Disparities.”

The deadline to submit a two-page manuscript precis is September 1, 2022. Selected authors will be invited to submit a full manuscript for which an initial draft is due February 1, 2023.
prevention science journal

Notice of Special Interest: Violence Research

The NIH has released a Notice to highlight interest in addressing the role of violence in health outcomes and integrating violence-related screening and interventions into health care settings, encouraging intervention research focused on addressing exposure to violence - including but not limited to child maltreatment, intimate partner violence/teen dating violence, elder mistreatment, peer violence/bullying, and community violence – to improve individual-level health processes and outcomes.

Rising Gun Violence Against Women and Children

“Seeing the traditionally vulnerable population of children and women becoming victims tells you the sense of security is just totally lost,” said Chidinma Nwakanma, an emergency medicine doctor at Penn Presbyterian Hospital. “That loss of safety and security is debilitating in a community — even the ones among us who are supposed to be protected are not.”
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Memorial Garden for Children Lost to Gun Violence

CHOP's Center for Violence Prevention, led by Joel Fein, and Moms Demand Action teamed up for a community memorial garden to offer a place of peace, reflection, and remembrance. The work was featured on 6 ABC's Hometown Hero segment.
joel fein garden hometown hero

Want to Support Community-Based Violence Prevention?

CodeRedPA created an initiative to support organizations doing violence prevention or work with communities with high levels of violence. They have asked for assistance in everything from grant writing to developing client intake processes to designing evaluations of their work. We have three committed individuals willing to partner with a community org, but would like 2-3 additional more as we have around 5 programs who expressed interest in this support.
Happy group of diverse people, friends. Watercolor concept backg

A Review of Synthetic Control Studies for Firearm Policies

Michelle Degli Esposti, Doug Wiebe, and Elinore Kaufman reviewed the literature of synthetic control evaluations and found that permit-to-purchase laws have a preventive effect on firearm deaths, while other policies have mixed and varied effects across regions.
Handgun with certificate licence, gun laws in America, US, Unite

Screening for Adolescent Firearm Suicide Risk

Joel Fein and colleagues highlight the need for universal screening in the emergency department for suicidality and lethal means, as they found that youth with firearm access (in the home or ability to access one within 24 hours) were at higher odds of prior suicide attempt or current suicidal ideation compared to those without firearm access.
handgun in a cupboard drawer

Peer Support for Opioid Use Disorder

Maggie Lowenstein and colleagues report on Penn Medicine's peer support program for patients being treated for opioid use disorder, including lessons learned, organizational challenges, and unresolved questions, in order to improve care and treatment adherence.
Wooden dolls and exchange arrow on blue background. Copy space.

Carrying Naloxone

Maggie Lowenstein, Kit Delgado, Jeanmarie Perrone, and Anish Agarwal contributed to a qualitative study on the motivations for carrying naloxone in patients that were prescribed the life-saving drug at emergency department discharge.
narcan naloxone

The Deadliest Roads in America

A deep dive into the worst roads for pedestrian safety, the recent rise in pedestrian fatalities, and the conditions that contribute to roads being "dangerous by design." The article highlights "stroads" -- halfway in between a street and a road, where multiple high-speed lanes mix with heavy commercial and residential development.
most dangerous road in america

Visio-vestibular Function

Kristy Arbogast and colleagues found that adolescents with and without a concussion history present with similar visio-vestibular function. Further, early age of first concussion is not evident in visio-vestibular function in children, suggesting potential cumulative effects that should be examined.
Brain Nervous System concept.Science is something that children

Real-Time Assessment of Concussion Symptoms

Doug Wiebe and colleagues assessed the reliability of capturing concussion symptoms through ecological momentary assessment compared to traditional clinical visits.
Man using mobile smart phone with global network connection, Tec

Measuring Older Adult Engagement with Facebook Interventions

George Demiris and colleagues set out to develop a measure for individual engagement with the Facebook platform.


lets connect nationwide childrens

Let's Connect - Mentoring from Nationwide Children's

Let’s Connect is a free consultation and mentoring service for injury professionals and trainees to connect with faculty and senior staff in the Center for Injury Research and Policy (CIRP) at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, OH. Injury professionals and students are often looking for a coach, mentor, or consultation outside of their institution. Let’s Connect provides an opportunity for them to connect via phone or Zoom with CIRP faculty and senior staff as part of the Center's professional mentoring and collaboration process.

Statistical Consultation for PISC-Affiliated Postdocs, Clinical Fellows, and Early Stage Faculty

With our commitment to develop future generations of injury scientists across disciplines, PISC is now providing statistics support for projects that are focused on the core mission of PISC and for which extramural resources are not currently available. This program offers statistical consultation through the BECCA (Biostatistics, Evaluation, Collaboration, Consultation, and Analysis) at Penn Nursing.
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Coming Soon... PISC BOX!

We are developing a shared folder in Penn Box with curated resources for PISC scholars and affiliates. This will include fun things like Zoom and LinkedIn backgrounds, as well as helpful instructions for new employee orientation, how to obtain software, arranging travel and conference registration, and more. If you have ideas for what to include in PISC Box, please contact

New Heatstroke Prevention Toolkit

While summer rages and thermometers blaze, keeping kids from overheating is a top priority. The toolkit contains a customizable press release, newsletter/blog article, social media posts, graphics, and links to additional resources which provide more information about heatstroke safety.


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Project Manager and Post-Doc Positions at CHOP CIRP
The Minds Matter Concussion Program in CHOP's Center for Injury Research & Prevention is searching for a project manager and post-doctoral fellow. The concussion research focuses on rigorously describing concussion across the pediatric age range and clinical settings, providing data and methods to develop engineering and behavioral prevention strategies, and improving diagnostic tools and recovery management. Through these efforts, our research can advance targeted interventions to prevent concussion and optimize treatment to shorten recovery time and reduce long-term poor outcomes.
presenter with csp logo
Penn Community Scholars Applications are Now Open!
The Penn Community Scholars Program was developed to foster and promote community-academic partnerships and community-based participatory research. This 12-session (mostly) virtual training is designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of community members to serve as equal partners in research. If you or someone you know may be interested in applying, please help us spread the word!

Applications are due by Friday 8/26

Assistant Commissioner, NYC Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Use Prevention, Care, and Treatment

The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (Health Department) is seeking an Assistant Commissioner to lead the Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Use Prevention, Care and Treatment (BADUPCT). The Assistant Commissioner of BADUPCT will be responsible for leading a large and diverse team in the strategic development, implementation, and oversight of a comprehensive public health, racial justice, and health equity approach to reducing morbidity and mortality related to alcohol and drug use in New York City.
University of Iowa College of Public Health Logo

Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Iowa College of Public Health

The Department of Epidemiology at the University of Iowa College of Public Health is looking for a highly qualified and motivated scholar to join a research program in the areas of injury epidemiology and road traffic safety. The initial appointment is a full-time postdoctoral research scholar position for two years, with the possibility to extend to a third year, subject to performance and funding availability.



PISC Exploratory Grant for Penn Faculty

The Penn Injury Science Center (PISC) invites proposals for our CDC-funded Exploratory Grants Program and will fund one project at $16,000 direct costs this cycle. The purpose of this program is to support Penn faculty in conducting a rigorous study to serve as the basis to seek long-term extramural funding to grow their area of science. The PI or all MPIs must be a member of the standing or research faculty of Penn.

Exploratory projects are expected to support the mission of PISC - which is to reduce injuries and violence through the highest caliber science. Applicants are encouraged to include more than one discipline and to demonstrate a rigorous approach to solve an important scientific problem in injury science.

Applications must be submitted by 5pm on Monday, October 10, 2022.

LDI Funding for Health Research-Focused Events at Penn

The Leonard Davis Institute is seeking proposals to fund working groups or other convenings at Penn that will help catalyze and support new research across Penn’s health policy and health services research community. They are accepting applications from LDI Senior Fellows on a rolling basis, with preference given to proposals that include the involvement of Senior Fellows who are junior faculty and bring together Senior Fellows from across schools and disciplines. Proposals should seek to develop sustained new collaborations or lines of inquiry at Penn or develop new partnerships or collaborations for research outside of Penn.

Funds of up to $10,000 are available, although lower-budget proposals are more likely to be funded. Funds may be combined with other sources of funding.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

H. Clay Gabler Scholar's Program Award

The H. Clay Gabler Scholar’s Program Award is an initiative specifically designed to support one student conducting research within the AAAM domains of interest. The recipient will receive $20,000 USD over 12 months.

The award is designed to augment ongoing research by AAAM members, collaborators, and student trainees, although compelling pilot projects will be considered.

The purpose of the H. Clay Gabler Scholar’s Program Award is three-fold:
  • To encourage original research on topics of interest to AAAM
  • To foster the next generation of automotive/transportation safety researchers
  • To encourage the participation of AAAM members in the active mentorship of young researchers in the field of traffic safety
Applicants and mentors must be members of AAAM. However, researchers who are interested in submitting a proposal but are not currently members of AAAM are invited to apply for the award and also include their membership applications as part of the submission.

Proposals are due August 15, 2022.

Penn INSPIRE Center Pilot Grants for Suicide Prevention

The NIMH-funded Innovation in Suicide Prevention Implementation Research (INSPIRE) Center, in partnership with the Department of Psychiatry and the Perelman School of Medicine, invites proposals for pilot projects. The INSPIRE Center’s goals are to develop and adapt suicide prevention interventions for underserved groups, and to design and test implementation strategies to optimize how evidence-based suicide prevention practices are brought to scale efficiently and effectively.
Pilot projects that bring to bear implementation science and interdisciplinary approaches on suicide prevention research are best suited for this opportunity. Priority will be given to pilots that address suicide prevention among underserved populations, are likely to lead to external grant funding, and have high-impact publication potential.

Especially encouraged are proposals that address areas of particular interest in suicide prevention:
  • Digital mental health
  • LGBTQ+ mental health
  • Black mental health
  • Lethal means counseling
  • Integration of prevention interventions in non-specialty settings
$150,000 will be distributed in this round of pilot funding, with up to one year of funding for each pilot project. Available funding for each pilot project will depend on project scope, but it is expected that most funded projects will be awarded around $50,000.

Proposals are due September 15, 2022.

Understanding Suicide Risk and Protective Factors among Black Youth (R01)

The National Institutes of Health has released RFA-MH-22-140, Understanding Suicide Risk and Protective Factors among Black Youth (R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed). This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) aims to advance translational research to better understand factors that confer risk and resilience for suicide among Black youth. This FOA encourages research that is designed to identify neurobiological, behavioral, social, and structural/systemic mechanisms underlying risk and protective factors for suicide among Black youth, with consideration for the identification of novel targets for future development of prevention and intervention efforts.

Understanding Suicide Risk and Protective Factors among Black Youth (R21)

The National Institutes of Health has released RFA-MH-22-141, Understanding Suicide Risk and Protective Factors among Black Youth (R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed). This FOA aims to advance translational research to better understand factors that confer risk and resilience for suicide among Black youth. R21 exploratory grant awards in response to this FOA are intended to conduct preliminary work regarding the assessment and characterization of risk and protective factors, with consideration for the identification of novel targets for the future development of prevention and intervention efforts.


No Retreat: The Dangers of Stand Your Ground

This Reveal podcast episode from the Center for Investigative Reporting features The Stand Your Ground Project, led by Dave Humphreys and Doug Wiebe, and quotes Michelle Degli Esposti, as it explores the impact of these "shoot first" laws.

In the decade since George Zimmerman killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida, stand your ground laws have expanded across the nation. And with them come more homicides.

Does the relative timing of return-to-activity stages after sports-related concussion influence return to sport time?

Following the publication of their article in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, Doug Wiebe, Abby Bretzin, and Bernadette D'Alonzo, were invited by the journal to write a knowledge translation blog aimed at helping busy clinicians learn about and implement the evolving science. Abby Bretzin was joined by Carly Day and Andy Peterson (Head Team Physicians at Purdue University and the University of Iowa, respectively, and site PIs in the Ivy League - Big Ten Epidemiology of Concussion Study) in writing the blog post, accompanied by a visual abstract by Andrew Belfiglio.
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About Us

The Penn Injury Science Center is funded by a grant from the CDC and brings together university, community, and government partners around injury and violence intervention programs with the greatest potential for impact. We promote and perform the highest quality research, training and translation of scientific discoveries into practice and policy in order to reduce injuries, violence, and their impact to our region, the US, and locations around the world.
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