In the US, this year there were 311 mass shootings according to the Gun Violence Archive and the year is not even over. And although we hear a lot from activists, we do not hear so often from those who are most directly concerned with the health effects of gun violence: people in the medical community. However, in the past week, many of them took the opportunity to speak publicly after the National Rifle Association (NRA) (NRA) sent out a tweet stating "self-important anti-gun doctors should be on remain of their track "(1
Many doctors and nurses responded quickly to the NRA's tweet and continued to argue that members of the medical community who care for those directly affected by gun violence see the effects first-hand. The hashtag #ThisIsMyLane quickly became viral. For example, one of the doctors who tweeted on the subject said, med. Cornelia Griggs, pediatric surgeon, a 5-year-old child who nearly bleed to death, and saw "dying of his father from gunshot wounds." , "
Dr. Griggs tells SELF that she has decided to speak out because" this is one of the most important public health crises
With arms control policies still not fundamentally changed, the doctors realize that they must take matters into their own hands, she says. "Doctors, no matter where they are on the issue of Second Amendment rights, whether they are Republicans or Democrats, come together and say we're a bullet hole, "she says." We've killed and killed enough patients, held enough broken children's hearts and destroyed families It's time for things to change. "
Dr Griggs says she regularly sees shooting victims in the children's hospital she works in." It's unacceptably common, "she says It's really at home to treat a pediatric patient with a gunshot wound. "Every time I take care of a child being shot, I think about what the mother of this patient is going through," she says. "I imagine the worst scenario in which one of my own children has been subjected to armed violence, and it is staggering."
The following is said by other doctors about gun violence, which is very much in their lane:
1. The treatment of the victims of armed violence is often a medically difficult task.
It may be obvious, but as weapons that do damage, weapons can be life-threatening medical emergencies that make it difficult for physicians to rescue patients in many cases. The most common problems depend on the severity of the injury but often require doctors to avoid too much blood loss, treat damage to organs or bones, prevent infections, and treat pain. Longer-term hospitalization may be required if a patient requires rehabilitation for a brain or spinal cord injury. And let's not forget the often long-term mental health problems, such as Posttraumatic Stress Disorder which may follow after the injury.
. 2 Doctors have to pass on the bad news to surviving relatives.
Attempting to rescue someone who was the victim of gun violence is tough enough , Several doctors also talked about the trauma of having to tell family members that they had lost a loved one who had been shot.
. 3 The data we have about the health effects of gun violence is not lying.
Some physicians pointed out that the data can not be circumvented: the suicide involves has a devastating effect on the US. According to a study published in Preventive Medicine in 2015, more than 67,000 people are injured by weapons every year. In the US, 32,000 people die, which means nearly 100 firearms each day.
If the cost of human life is not enough to convince you, the 2015 study found that firearms injuries result in $ 48 billion in the value of hospital costs and labor lost per year, most of which is due to fatal injuries is. A recent study published in Health Affairs last year confirmed that amount, which included $ 2.8 billion for hospital changes and $ 46 billion for lost wages and medical care ,
. 4 The effects go deeper than most people think, both physically and emotionally.
The effects of a bullet wound are often dramatic and for those of us who are not & # 39; sometimes unexpectedly grim every day.
. 5 Doctors are also traumatized by rifle violence.
Several doctors have written that they have learned to do so with the To be able to cope with mourning after one can not rescue a shot patient, and the trauma of caring for these patients. "Anyone who cares for really sick patients has a second victim," says Dr. Griggs. "It is difficult."
. 6 Doctors are literally knee-deep here.
Many doctors now share photos of themselves after taking care of shot patients, and it's difficult to deal with them.
Dr. Griggs says she hopes the medical community will "generate momentum" with their tweets. "As a medical community, it's our responsibility to push the needle further forward," she says. "In the same way we started smoking and tobacco, I would challenge our surgeon-general to hear what all doctors say, and to put this into the hands of the government as a public-health crisis – which is exactly what it is . "