A new commentary in the Annals of Internal Medicine from researchers with The Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research and University of California, Davis, calls for more physician engagement in the current gun policy dialogue.
"Physicians are an important source of information for the public and a valued constituency for policymakers," said lead author Shannon Frattaroli, a faculty member with the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "They are uniquely poised to be at the forefront of gun violence prevention efforts."
Frattaroli, along with co-author Garen Wintemute, an emergency medicine physician at UC Davis Medical Center and the Baker-Teret Chair in Violence Prevention at UC Davis, outline five strategies for physician engagement on the issue:
"Most people who die from gunshot wounds do so at the shooting site and never make it to the hospital. More or better treatment is unlikely to yield the greatest reductions in gun deaths," Wintemute said. "Gun violence is a public-health problem requiring a greater emphasis on prevention. Physicians, on behalf of their patients and their communities, can add much to the current policy discussions."
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