APA Co-hosts Congressional Briefing on Stress and Health

APA cosponsored a congressional briefing on February 20, 2002, entitled “Promoting Health in a Stressful World.”

APA cosponsored a congressional briefing on February 20, 2002, entitled “Promoting Health in a Stressful World.” Speakers included Raynard Kington, MD, PhD, of the NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, University of Miami Professor Neil Schneiderman, Christine Bachrach of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and Curtis McMillen, Assistant Professor of Social Work at Washington University, St. Louis.

Neil Schneiderman, who is a recent chair of APA’s Board of Scientific Affairs and a longtime NIH grantee, explained what scientists have learned through behavioral research about the effects of stress on health and illness. Christine Bachrach spoke about the types of research that may be spurred by an NIH conference she co-chaired, "Toward Higher Levels of Analysis: Progress and Promise in Research on Social and Cultural Dimensions of Health.” Curtis McMillen spoke about his research on unanticipated positive by-products of tragedies such as the Oklahoma City bombing and traumatic accidents. Raynard Kington served as moderator. Congressional staff members as well as representatives of federal science funding agencies attended.

The briefing was sponsored by the Coalition for the Advancement of Health through Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, whose members include representatives of the American Psychological Association, the Consortium of Social Science Associations, the American Sociological Association, and other behavioral and social science-focused organizations. Representative Connie Morella (R-MD) agreed to serve as the congressional sponsor for the briefing. Congressional briefings are one means of sharing exciting scientific findings with policymakers. APA will bring scientists to Capitol Hill throughout the year to explain the importance of behavioral research in venues ranging from briefings, to congressional testimony, to one-on-one meetings with policymakers.