Policy & Advocacy

Cohen Veterans Bioscience advocates to improve the lives of people affected by trauma-related and other brain disorders – at the Federal, State and Local levels. Our advocacy efforts are prioritized and focus on four fundamental areas:
Policy Funding

Ensuring Targeted Federal Investment in Brain Trauma-Related Research

Our brain trauma roadmapping efforts in both PTSD and TBI have demonstrated that meaningful investment in brain health is needed to advance diagnostics and treatments. CVB advocates for sustainable and predictable growth of the NIH budget over the long term, including targeted funding for trauma-related disorders in an amount that is commensurate with the actual disease burden and reflects priority areas identified in our roadmapping efforts. We also support robust and continued funding for the BRAIN Initiative and a call-to-action that all data from the BRAIN Initiative be made openly accessible to the scientific community to advance progress.

Improved Data Sharing
Supporting Precision Therapeutic Approaches Across Brain Health

Current treatment strategies for many brain diseases and disorders largely resemble “trial and error” and many diseases rely on a symptoms-based approach to diagnosis and treatment. In brain health, doctors’ need better tools to tailor treatments to the right patient and the right condition. We support Federal funding that moves beyond an incremental approach to brain science, including funding deep phenotype cohorts to enable biomarker discovery, adaptive clinical trial designs and promoting data sharing to enhance discovery and development.

Promoting Practices to Improve Transparency, Reproducibility & Impact of Science

Accelerating research discovery—particularly in the field of brain health—requires researchers to build upon the best available scientific evidence in order to avoid needless starts and stops and duplicated efforts. For these reasons, CVB advocates for policies that ensure best research practices based on proven approaches, which are implemented at all stages of the research process—from design to execution to reporting. Through the implementation of best practices, we ensure all research is conducted to the highest standards and through an approach that ensures public confidence. In addition, CVB advocates for improved biomedical workforce training at all levels to protect the US’s competitiveness as a scientific enterprise.

Broader Access to Clinical Trials
Advocating for Policies to Promote Brain Health Solutions for Veterans & Service Members

The potential for the VA to be a leader in spearheading innovative clinical trials in partnership with industry should be recognized as a national priority. The VA is already making strides through its Accelerating Clinical Trials (ACT) initiative, which aims to improve the speed of clinical trial start-up, but these initiatives need collective support to continue a trajectory of success. CVB advocates for targeted reforms to ensure that the VA has the infrastructure and technical capacity for transformative science so that we can provide our nation’s Veterans access to the best available treatment options.

Advocacy Milestones

Veterans Advisory Council

The Veterans Advisory Council (VAC) galvanizes senior leaders from across academia, government and industry who have a deep personal commitment to Veterans’ concerns related to brain health. The VAC represents, advocates and supports Veterans’ interests to CVB, to partners, and to the broader community engaged in the support, research, prevention, and treatment of brain health conditions.

The VAC’s priorities are to advocate for evidence-driven approaches to discover new solutions for the “invisible wounds of war” and serve as a voice by providing advice and strategic recommendations for CVB’s mission and objectives.

Learn more about the Veterans Advisory Council

Coalition to Heal Invisible Wounds

Founded in February 2017, the Coalition advocates for policy reforms to widen and expedite the pipeline for new therapies and diagnostics for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI).

By deepening public-private cooperation and adopting targeted reforms, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defense (DOD) can become leading partners in delivering new therapies and diagnostics; they have many outstanding assets and institutional strengths, as well as the desire to overcome the institutional hurdles to establishing advanced research partnerships.

Learn more about the Coalition to Heal Invisible Wounds


Contact our Director of Advocacy and Policy to learn more about how you can become involved with our advocacy efforts.

Chantelle Farland-Beckham, PhDChantelle Ferland-Beckham
Director of Policy & Advocacy
Cohen Veterans Bioscience