Funding Tomorrow’s Leaders
Sleep loss hampers our ability to concentrate, reduces motivation and creativity, and increases irritability. Insufficient sleep jeopardizes our personal health, our workplace productivity, and the well being of our communities.
In the United States, working days lost due to insufficient sleep and sleep disorders account for $411 billion in economic losses and represent 2.28 percent of our country’s GDP annually. The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) has described the rising trend of insufficient sleep as “an unmet public health problem.” Thanks to breakthroughs in the field of sleep research, we are now beginning to understand the fundamental importance of sleep.
While we know that individuals differ in how they respond to sleep loss, shift work, and other sleep/circadian disruptions, we do not yet know how to predict those differences, or how to use them to decrease health and occupational risks and increase productivity. Sleep research matters, and it is vital that we continue to probe and investigate if we are to unlock these mysteries and so many more.
While there is no shortage of innovative thinking and ideas in the field of sleep research, there is a shortage of investigators to spearhead sleep-related research projects, specifically early-career investigators. The SRS and SRS Foundation are uniquely positioned to address the current critical shortage of early-career sleep researchers through their early-career investigator award program.
Since 2005, SRSF has provided 50 awards totaling $1.6 million; however, those awardees have gone on to secure an additional $24.5 million in funding, demonstrating that the Foundation is identifying and funding the next generation of sleep and circadian researchers. To expand this impact, the organization must increase the numbers of awards they offer annually. The Funding Our Future Scientists campaign seeks to accomplish exactly that. By increasing the number of awardees from three to ten annually, more sleep and circadian researchers will be able to launch their careers to make the significant advances needed to understand and treat sleep disorders.
The Sleep Research Society Foundation invites everyone impacted by sleep disorders to join us in this effort. We know that you are equally inspired by the promise and potential that sleep research offers. Help us raise the $2.5 million in new funding to augment our early-career investigator program.
Sleep research is at a momentous crossroad, and we need to encourage researchers to remain in the field, to submit their ideas, and to continue their all-too-important research. Opportunities to make such a profound impact on a field of medicine are rare, so let us seize this opportunity together. Millions of Americans are and will be depending on the life-changing research we must fund today. We can take up that challenge together by supporting brilliant young minds and their innovative research ideas. It is within our reach to reduce the risk of illness, improve on existing therapeutic approaches for patients, and enhance public health and safety for millions.