Almost $3 Billion Spent Per Year On Injuries From Firearms Interview with:
Faiz Gani MD
Postdoctoral research fellow
Department of Surgery
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Baltimore, Maryland What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The current study sought to evaluate epidemiological trend in emergency department (ED) visits for firearm-related injuries in the US.

In our study, we observed that 25.3 patients per 100,000 presented to the ED for a firearm-related injury. This translated to over 78,000 ED visits per year.

Over time, while firearm injuries decreased from 2006-2013, an increase in the incidence of firearm-related injuries was observed in 2014.

Additionally, over time injuries among older patients and those injured in an unintentional firearm injury increased. Injuries due to an assault decreased over time.

The average ED and inpatient charges were $5,254 and $95,887, respectively, resulting in an overall financial burden of approximately $25 billion over the study or an annual $2.8 billion in ED and inpatients charges. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Perhaps the most striking finding of our study was the magnitude of individuals affected by this public health concern. Furthermore, it is important to note that while firearm-related injuries result account for over 36,000 annual deaths, the number of patients effected by firearm-related injuries is significantly higher.

This results in not only a large clinical burden but also a substantial burden to the healthcare system and society as a whole.

Future policies are required that facilitate the adequate funding and promotion of research within this area/ Additionally, appropriate legislation is also required to prevent these injuries. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: We hope that our study in highlighting the clinical and financial burden of firearm-related injuries furthers the conversation around firearm-related injuries. We hope that in the future, we all can come together an approach firearm injuries using a public health and evidence-based method.

Only through a better understanding of this issue can we create effective measures and policies to ensure prevention of these injuries.
Disclosures: The authors have no financial disclosure or any conflicts of interest to declare. Thank you for your contribution to the community.

Citation: Emergency Department Visits For Firearm-Related Injuries In The United States, 2006–14

doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2017.0625Health Aff October 2017 vol. 36 no. 10 1729-1738

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on October 4, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD