The Florida Legislature Gags Health Care Workers. How not to save a life.
Just file this under “Kick me in the head.”
As well as others, like people who don’t want their houses to float away in Miami, or their drinking water to be all salty, or just us folks here in Stuart/Jensen Beach that don’t want to have to worry about pollution, trains with bombs, and getting flesh eating bacteria when we go to the beach only to be eaten by horny sharks.
When does this endless intrusion end?
Honestly. I’d rather be some sharks dinner than have to figure out how to deal with this garbage.
The people who couldn’t even pass half the credentialing that’s needed to work in the health care field passed a terrible law again to punish all of us that are trying to do our jobs.
This whole mess started when a woman took her child to the pediatrician in Ocala. Pediatricians go to meetings with other pediatricians. and in those meeting they come up with a list of things to “educate” their clients. Just like us nurses do. Especially now that everything is computerized we can’t upload our admission unless all the questions are answered. Many of our safety questions are mandated. That’s just for regular medical people. I’m not even talking about psych.
Let me repeat that one more time. WE CAN’T UPLOAD OUR PAPERWORK UNLESS THE ALL THE QUESTIONS ARE ANSWERED.
At any rate, the pediatrician is doing his job and this girl totally goes off on him and she gets in touch with her state rep who lives in Sanford. The Florida NRA gets a hold of all this and they just run with it. I’d have to go back and look it up but I think the pediatrician refused to see the patient not because of the gun. Because she went off. Doctor’s have the right to tell patients they don’t want to come back. It happens all the time.
Guess what. One of those questions is “Do you have a gun?” or “Do you have any weapons?” or “Do you have any fire arms? ” We ask this question, honestly ,with the same tone in our voices as did you poop today? It’s just one more question in a zillion questions when you are doing an assessment of a patient. It’s just one little bit of education. We talk about all kinds of things: scatter rugs, seat belts, steps. Anything that is about the safety of patient is OUR business. Because that’s our job. Our first priority is to make sure our patients are safe and if they are not we have a legal/moral/ethical responsibility to make sure we fixed the situation so the patient is safe.
I’ve have never in all my years as a nurse had anyone who was upset about this question. I’ve had some great discussions about safety especially when children are involved.
I’m not antigun. We had Dad’s army guns in the house and we had guns in Maine at our camp. I was a sharpshooter at summer camp in New Hampshire and I carried a rifle on my back in the field of the kibbutz I lived on in Israel. I was taught to be responsible.
There are some cases that I do need to know if someone has gun. Because if I don’t ask and the person hurts them self or someone else its malpractice. It beyond malpractice. It’s immoral. It’s beyond reason. Just the thought that I could after all my hard work be responsible for the death of someone because my legislators are idiots just slays me.
“Several years ago, the American Medical Association advised doctors to ask their patients about firearms and “educate patients to the dangers of firearms to children” in the name of public health. But doctors in Florida may be suppressed from giving this medical advice, now that a federal appeals court upheld a Florida law that became known as the “physician gag rule” because it punishes doctors for talking about guns.”
Except it not just about physicians. It’s about all health care workers. We are all gagged and we are all open to disciplinary action.
“The American Academy of Pediatrics likens counseling on gun safety to counseling on lead paint avoidance or seat belt use. Pediatricians, the group’s recent policy statement reads, are “urged to counsel parents about the dangers of allowing children and adolescents to have access to guns inside and outside the home.” Doctors are encouraged to promote trigger locks, lock boxes, and gun safes. Some distribute cable locks. The American College of Physicians is similarly proactive, calling gun violence a public health issue “requiring immediate attention.” The group, of which most practicing internal-medicine doctors are members, declared in its recent position statement: “Physicians must become more active in counseling patients about firearm safety.” The college implores doctors to open that conversation by asking patients (with and without children in their homes) about gun ownership.”
790.338 Medical privacy concerning firearms; prohibitions; penalties; exceptions.—
Almost 20,000 people committed suicide in the United States with firearms in 2011. More than 11,000 were killed by firearms that year, and more than 200 were killed in accidents with guns. In 2009, almost 7,400 children were hospitalized because of injuries related to guns.
Doctors who ask about guns aren’t doing so because they’re nosy. They’re doing so because the vast majority of those deaths and injuries are preventable.
It’s entirely possible to keep a gun in your home safely. But studies show that the majority of people who keep guns in their homes do so in an unlocked space. Few have any kind of trigger locks. More than 10 percent report keeping their guns loaded or near ammunition, in an unlocked area.
That’s often how children get hurt. Few people argue that young children should have access to guns or ammunition. But that’s what’s happening in far too many homes in the United States. Research shows that guns kept in the home are more likely to be involved in accidents, crimes, or suicides than in self-defense.
ut this kind of stuff does happen in Florida—far more often than you’d think. In 2013 alone, at least 17 children in the state were killed by guns, and myriad more were wounded. These tragedies are part of a spiraling, nationwide epidemic of gun violence toward children, which includes a horrifyingly high number of absolutely preventable accidental shootings.
The gag law, nicknamed the Docs vs. Glocks law by its detractors, was passed by an overwhelmingly Republican Legislature brimming over with money from NRA lobbyists. It would seem to be an obvious First Amendment violation: For asking a patient a question that could save his child’s life, a doctor in Florida could lose her medical license or be fined $10,000. The state has no rational—let alone compelling—interest in censoring doctors from asking this basic question, much less preventing doctors from making evidence-based recommendations about public health and safety. And the law is so broad and vague that even an indirect inquiry could potentially qualify as illegal “harassment of a patient regarding firearm ownership.”