As an advocate for those living with orthopaedic injuries, I recently had the opportunity to serve as a consumer reviewer to evaluate research applications submitted to the Peer Reviewed Orthopaedic Research Program (PRORP) sponsored by the Department of Defense. As a consumer reviewer, I was a full voting member, along with prominent scientists, at meetings to help determine how the $30 million appropriated by Congress for Fiscal Year 2014 (FY14) will be spent on future orthopaedic injury research.
Consumer reviewers represent the collective view of orthopaedic injury survivors, patients and family members as we evaluate the impact of each application. As a consumer reviewer, I prepared comments on the impact of the research to improve treatment and rehabilitation for optimal recovery, restoration of function, and quality of life. My role was to also help the scientists understand the patient’s perspective and provide valuable insight into the potential impact of the proposed project, bringing asense of urgency and reminding them all of the human element involved in medical research.
You can get more information on the Peer Reviewed Orthopaedic Research Program, including how to serve as a consumer reviewer, on the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) Web site: http://cdmrp.army.mil.
Gail Whitehead, Public Affairs, 301-619-7783