BY FAX – 202-224-0454
Senator Barbara Boxer
Dear Senator Boxer:
As both a constituent of yours and a journalist investigating the national sports concussion crisis, I am disappointed that you did not respond to my request for comment yesterday on the report questioning whether Mark Lovell, a University of Pittsburgh Medical Center researcher and a consultant for the National Football League and World Wrestling Entertainment, had compliantly disclosed his conflicts of interest in the course of applying for more than $2 million in research grants from the National Institutes of Health. Those grants helped develop what in my view is the ineffective and misleadingly hyped ImPACT concussion management system.
Your Commerce Committee colleague, Senator Udall, has spotlighted corrupt and scare-mongering marketing of anti-concussion products. I believe that to do so without subjecting ImPACT and its NFL patrons to equal scrutiny both skews the national discussion of this issue and endangers youth athletes everywhere.
At the close of business today, I will be writing to the NIH director, Dr. Francis Collins, with a request to expedite the release to me of Mr. Lovell’s 2002-05 NIH grant applications, which are indisputably public records. Please let me know if you will forward the letter on my behalf and use your good offices to get these documents released speedily. Thank you.