A Consensus-Driven Agenda for Emergency Medicine Firearm Injury Prevention Research

Ranney, M. L., Fletcher, J., Alter, H., Barsotti, C., Bebarta, V. S., Betz, M. E., Carter, P.M., Cerdá, M., Cunningham, R.M., Crane, P., Fahimi, J., Miller, M.J., Rowhani-Rahbar, A., Vogel, J.A., Wintemute, G.J., Waseem, M., Shah, M.N.; ACEP Technical Advisory Group on Firearm Injury Research, a Subcommittee of the ACEP Research Committee. (2017). A Consensus-Driven Agenda for Emergency Medicine Firearm Injury Prevention Research. Annals of emergency medicine69(2), 227-240.


Study objective: To identify critical emergency medicine-focused firearm injury research questions and develop an evidence-based research agenda.

Methods: National content experts were recruited to a technical advisory group for the American College of Emergency Physicians Research Committee. Nominal group technique was used to identify research questions by consensus. The technical advisory group decided to focus on 5 widely accepted categorizations of firearm injury. Subgroups conducted literature reviews on each topic and developed preliminary lists of emergency medicine-relevant research questions. In-person meetings and conference calls were held to iteratively refine the extensive list of research questions, following nominal group technique guidelines. Feedback from external stakeholders was reviewed and integrated.

Results: Fifty-nine final emergency medicine-relevant research questions were identified, including questions that cut across all firearm injury topics and questions specific to self-directed violence (suicide and attempted suicide), intimate partner violence, peer (nonpartner) violence, mass violence, and unintentional (“accidental”) injury. Some questions could be addressed through research conducted in emergency departments; others would require work in other settings.

Conclusion: The technical advisory group identified key emergency medicine-relevant firearm injury research questions. Emergency medicine-specific data are limited for most of these questions. Funders and researchers should consider increasing their attention to firearm injury prevention and control, particularly to the questions identified here and in other recently developed research agendas.