Navigation Links
Broader background checks and denial criteria could help prevent mass shooting catastrophes
Date:12/27/2012

(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) Garen Wintemute, a leading authority on gun violence prevention and an emergency medicine physician at UC Davis, believes broader criteria for background checks and denials on gun purchases can help prevent future firearm violence, including mass shooting catastrophes such as those that occurred at Sandy Hook, Aurora, Virginia Tech and Columbine.

"To reduce the number of deaths and injuries from firearms in the United States, we need to develop policies that require background checks for all firearm purchases, including private-party sales the most important source of firearms for criminal buyers and others who are prohibited from purchasing guns," said Wintemute, director of the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program and inaugural Susan P. Baker-Stephen P. Teret Chair in Violence Prevention at UC Davis.

"We need to prevent individuals with a previous conviction for a misdemeanor violent crime, such as assault and battery, from purchasing or possessing a firearm. We also need to develop better data and criteria that allow us to distinguish between those with a treatable mental disorder who do not have a history of violence from those with a history of violence or substance abuse," he said.

Wintemutes views posted on the Online First section of the New England Journal of Medicine website as a Perspective article, entitled Tragedys Legacy, on December 26, 2012. It also will appear in the journal's January 31, 2013 print edition.

According to Wintemute, the United States represents only 5 percent of the worlds population, but it owns more than 40 percent of all firearms that are in civilians hands. In addition, he believes that policies governing gun purchases and use have allowed the widest possible array of firearms to be available to the widest group of people, for use under the widest array of conditions. Wintemute specifically cites the Stand Your Ground laws, enacted at the state level, as dangerous experiments that have been used to legitimize shootings that once were considered to be murder.

Wintemute emphasizes taking a broad approach.

"It may be impossible to predict the next mass shooting incident, and we cannot expect interventions designed for specific circumstances to eliminate the risk of firearm violence. But we can change our firearms laws, based on existing evidence, to reduce harm and better ensure public safety, he said.

Some 40 percent of all firearm transactions, for example, involve private-party sellers, who are not required to keep records and cannot obtain a background check, Wintemute said. We need policies that prevent these quick, anonymous and undocumented sales. We also need policies that deny gun purchases to those who we know are at high risk for violence.

Wintemutes research has shown that among persons who purchase firearms legally, those with a previous conviction for a misdemeanor violent crime are roughly nine times as likely as those with no criminal history to be arrested for a violent crime later. For those with two or more such prior convictions, he found the risk increases by a factor of 10 to 15. In addition, studies have shown that firearm owners who abuse alcohol are more likely than other owners to engage in violence-related firearm behavior.

We know that comprehensive background checks and expanded denial criteria are feasible and effective, because they are in place in many states and have been evaluated, Wintemute said. In California, the denial policy reduced the risk of violence and firearm-related crime by 23 percent among those whose purchases were denied. But we need to broaden these and other effective state-level regulations to eliminate the flow of firearms from states where laws are lax to states where laws are stricter.

Wintemute also notes that proposals for comprehensive background checks and denials for misdemeanor violence and for alcohol abuse enjoy broad public support, including among firearm owners. Survey data come from Wintemutes own research as well as a series of public polls conducted for the Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

While the individual circumstances of the mass shooting massacres in the U.S. are different, we can only change the outcome if we confront the challenge of unchecked and easy access to firearms, Wintemute said. Strengthening our background check and denial policies for firearm purchases will not eliminate firearm violence, but they can reduce it.


'/>"/>

Contact: Carole Gan
carole.gan@ucdmc.ucdavis.edu
916-734-9047
University of California - Davis Health System
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. U.S. Children Exposed to Hours of Background TV Daily
2. Viewers family background affects how they react to MTV shows 16 and Pregnant, Teen Mom
3. SingleSource Background Screening Company Calls On Adults To Take Proactive Approach To Stop Child Sexual Abuse
4. Color-coded labels improve healthy food choices in employees from all backgrounds
5. Middle-Aged Diabetics May Need Earlier Colon Checks
6. Simple ovarian cancer symptom survey that checks for 6 warning signs may improve early detection
7. Many Americans in Denial Over Weight Gain: Study
8. Autism by the numbers: Yale researchers examine impact of new diagnostic criteria
9. BUSM/VA researchers examine new PTSD diagnosis criteria
10. Doctors call for evidence-based appropriateness criteria for elective procedures
11. Red wine, fruit compound could help block fat cell formation
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... provider of comprehensive treatment for eating disorders, is opening a brand new child ... provide individuals ages 8-17 and their families with even more specialized eating disorder ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... of Mehling Orthopedics and chief medical officer of Blue Horizon International (BHI), Brian ... Regeneration. The conference was held during May 5-6, 2016 in Chicago, IL, USA. ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Bunion Bootie , the manufacturer of the ... more than humbled by customer demand over the Mother’s Day Weekend promotion. So much ... that Bunion Bootie has completely replenished its inventory levels, it hopes to continue its ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 26, 2016 , ... The introduction of our professional athletes coincides with the ... , “We are proud to introduce Meghan Klingenberg, defender and World Champion ... Quick, wide receiver for Los Angeles who was a second round selection in the ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... May 2016 – Lips ... central to popular cosmetic improvement efforts. Record numbers of clients now ask about lip ... or pouty, says Kally Papantoniou, MD, of Advanced Dermatology P.C. , The ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/26/2016)... 26, 2016 A key trend ... the emergence of new treatments. Cardax, a development stage ... treatment. The therapy is expected to fulfil large unmet ... is conducting studies to develop new treatments for osteoarthritis. ... genes involved in osteoarthritis are being investigated, and early ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... , May 26, 2016   Change ... and analytics, network solutions and technology-enabled services ... it entered into a strategic channel partnership ... outpatient software solutions and revenue cycle management ... hospitals and rehabilitation clinics to optimize revenue, ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... PARIS , May 25,2016 ... with the near-infrared Cellvizio platform for urological and ... MKEA, OTCQX: MKEAY) inventor of Cellvizio®, the multidisciplinary ... important regulatory milestone in the US with the ... Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This new FDA ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: