I am not a number person, but I do appreciate that statistics carry weight with decision makers. I have often been frustrated by the commonly held assertion that 500 amputations occur every day in this country. Although the statistic is impressive on face value, I have never been completely confident in the research substantiating the claim. In fact, when I requested collaborating evidence, I was told to accept the statistic without question because "it sounds good to us."
Recently a grant was awarded to create the National Limb Loss Registry. This registry will house public statistics concerning the community. With the constant warnings about identity theft, I was relieved to learn that all information is thoroughly deidentified before it is included in the registry. Finally, we will have concrete and verifiable information about the amputee community.
I fully admit that I was skeptical when I first learned about the registry. In fact, last night Dave and I recorded a podcast with him trying to convince me that the creation of a registry is a good thing for the community. Check it out, and stay tuned for more information.