Massachusetts Medical Society’s Physician Oriented Gun Safety Resources
Summary by Elizabeth J. Johnson, MD
In a statewide effort to curb gun violence, the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) announced resources which aim to assist physicians in promoting gun safety to patients. Just as physicians are responsible for encouraging use of seat belts, sunblock, and cycling helmets, we should also protect our patients through promotion of safe gun practices. Through brochures, an informative website, and even CME training, the MMS and collaborative parties are reaching out to medical professionals so that they are better prepared to speak to their patients about this sensitive issue.
The information provided covers a wide range of firearm safety topics to discuss with patients. These include counseling patients regarding certain behaviors, gun-licensing laws, reporting laws, patient privacy, and specific scenarios that are high risk for injury. The material provided helps providers discuss these issues with patients in an open-minded fashion, free of bias. Through prevention, physicians can join efforts of law enforcement in preventing firearm injury.
On its website, the Massachusetts Medical Society has a page dedicated to this entitled ‘Firearm Violence Resources’. This page provides educational material for patients and providers, flyers and pamphlets which can be printed out and distributed to patients, access to a CME course, as well as information regarding gun safety and the policy behind it.
For further information, please visit the Firearm Violence Resources of the MMS at http://www.massmed.org/Patient-Care/Health-Topics/Firearm-Violence-Resources/#.WNE5PneZOCQ
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