This Maryland hospital wants physicians to discuss gun safety with patients

Hospital officials at Parole, Md.-based Anne Arundel Medical Center view gun violence as a public health crisis and want physicians to hold nonjudgmental talks about the gun safety with their patients, according to Capital Gazette

"We have a moral obligation to address this problem," David Moller, MD, chief of clinical and organizational ethics at Anne Arundel Medical Center, told the Capital Gazette. "Because it is so contentious and so divisive, it’s going to take sustained moral courage to build a lasting initiative to address and resolve."

Officials discussed the issue with about 100 hospital employees and community members during a July 26 panel discussion, although physician talking points and literature for patients are still under development.

The idea of physicians talking about gun safety with patients emerged after Anne Arundel physicians treated survivors of The Capital Gazette newsroom shooting in June, where five employees were killed.

Barry Meisenberg, MD, director of medicine at Anne Arundel, categorizes the hospital's planned discussions as harm reduction, which, is not the same as gun control.

This is not political advocacy, but rather patient advocacy," Dr. Meisenberg told the Capital Gazette.

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