Firearm injury is a leading cause of death in the U.S., injuries from guns kill more children and adolescents than any other health threat and Black Americans face disproportionately high rates of firearm homicide due to systemic racism. My goal as a public health expert on firearm injury prevention is to encourage people to stay activated. There is unprecedented momentum and support for firearm injury research, and I am enthusiastic that the work we are doing now will make meaningful progress toward reducing the devastation caused by firearms for generations to come.
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Dr. Prater holds a doctorate in public health from The Ohio State University, with a focus in health services research, pragmatic intervention development and policy evaluation. Her work focuses on understanding the circumstances around firearm suicide among vulnerable populations and developing health systems interventions for suicide prevention through firearm safety. Using a public health lens, she works on tailoring interventions to meet the specific needs of vulnerable populations (e.g. dementia, terminal illness) at increased risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviors. She is currently funded by the National Institutes on Aging and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to produce clinical decision-making tools to help people with early dementia, their care partners, and primary clinicians make safer plans for firearm storage.