On Friday, December 17, officials representing the Population Association of America (PAA) and the Association of Population Centers (APC) met with the directors and senior program staff at the National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD), and the NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences (OBSSR). PAA President Robert Hummer, APC President Sara Curran, and Chair of the PAA/APC Government and Public Affairs Committee Vida Maralani led the delegation of population scientists hailing from 10 states and institutions.
The overall purpose of these meetings was to update officials about significant NIH-funded population research activities and findings and to discuss opportunities to enhance NIH engagement with the population research community. Participants presented on a variety of topics including COVID-19, adolescent health, climate change, social determinants of health, global aging, structural racism, reproductive health, and biodemography of aging. Many of their presentations also featured data from NIH-funded longitudinal surveys, including the Health and Retirement Study and National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health. PAA and APC representatives also highlighted the value of centers and networks that the agency directly and indirectly supports and encouraged the NIH to consider opportunities to expand this critical infrastructure as well as other training and research initiatives.