About CDC's Injury Center
For more than 20 years, CDC’s Injury Center has helped protect people from violence and injury. We are the nation’s leading authority on violence and injury prevention. We research the best ways to prevent violence and injuries, using science to create real-world solutions to keep people safe, healthy, and productive.
Injuries kill more than 180,000 people each year—that’s 1 death every 3 minutes. Regardless of sex, race, or economic status, violence and injuries affect everyone. In the first half of life, more Americans die from violence and injuries—such as motor vehicle crashes, falls, or homicides—than from any other cause, including cancer, HIV, or the flu. And injury deaths are only part of the picture. Millions of Americans are injured each year and survive. Many of them are faced with life-long health, social and financial problems.
We will put violence and injury prevention on the map as the premier public health achievement of this decade.
The mission of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control is to prevent violence and injuries, and reduce their consequences.
The year 2012 marked the Injury Center’s 20th Anniversary. It has been a year to reflect and build upon our achievements, and to assess our organization’s structure and what we can do even better.
To that end, we have reorganized so that the Injury Center structure creates more opportunities for collaboration, work on cross-cutting issues and risk factors, and provides the flexibility needed to respond to emerging issues while continuing our work to address the public health burden of violence and injuries. The structural changes also provide a supportive environment for non-structural and systems changes that will increase our ability to achieve our vision. These changes will:
- Optimize our ability to attain our mission and vision.
- Give us the ability to be more nimble and responsive.
- Create an environment that improves collaboration and integration.
- Gain economies in operational costs.
A Brief History
Injuries have been a leading cause of death and disability throughout history; consequently, many people and agencies have undertaken prevention efforts. In 1985, the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine (IOM) recognized the need for a coordinated effort to prevent injuries in the United States. They identified CDC as the federal agency best suited to lead injury research. CDC had a strong history of interdisciplinary research, data collection and analysis, information sharing, and relationships with states—elements the council and IOM deemed important. And unlike other federal agencies involved in injury prevention, CDC had no regulatory or enforcement role.
In 1997, IOM’s Committee on Injury Prevention and Control recommended that no one agency could effectively serve as the sole leader for injury. Rather, it recommended that agencies should collaborate on injury prevention and control activities, with each agency leading in its area of expertise.
CDC’s Injury Center now functions as the focal point for the public health approach to preventing violence and injuries and their consequences, by moving from science into action.
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