Talking About Guns Can Be Politically Murky Ground For Doctors, But Experts Say It’s Necessary
And many doctors already think they should be addressing the topic with patients.
Los Angeles Times:
Doctors Urged To Make A Public Commitment To Talk To Their Patients About Guns And Gun Safety
As guardians of health and gatekeepers to the world of medicine, primary care doctors are expected to plunge dauntlessly into the most delicate topics with their patients. Now, in the wake of the worst mass shooting in recent U.S. history, a new campaign is challenging these physicians to talk to their patients about guns. As doctor questions go, it’s right up there with inquiring about risky sexual behavior and a notch stickier than drug or excess alcohol use and obesity. Asking about a patient’s guns strays into prickly political territory. It risks backlash from hard-line gun rights advocates. And in small or rural communities, where guns are often plentiful and medical care is scarce, it may scare a few patients off. (Healy, 10/16)
The New York Times:
750 Gun Deaths A Year Are Prevented By Waiting Periods, Study Finds
State waiting periods for handgun purchases prevent about 750 gun deaths each year in the United States, new research has found. An estimated 910 gun deaths could also be avoided if those policies were adopted nationwide, according to the study, published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. (Chokshi, 10/16)