The Eichholz Law Firm examines a controversial provision in President Obama’s health care bill which will limit the ability of doctors gathering data regarding their patient’s use of guns.
Many are still mourning the massacre of 20 school children which occurred last month in Newtown, Connecticut. In the aftermath of this tragedy, the Eichholz Law Firm takes note of the fact that lawmakers and medical organizations are raising criticisms of a provision in President Barack Obama’s new health care bill. Entitled “Protection of Second Amendment Gun Rights,” this provision would restrict the ability of doctors to collect information about their patients’ gun use.
Only discovered recently, this provision was added to the bill in response to strong pressure from the National Rifle Association (NRA) during the 2010 debate over health care. The NRA argues that insurance companies could potentially raise the premiums of gun owners if doctors had the ability to gather data regarding their patients’ use of guns. As the Washington Post reports, members of the Senate who support this provision do not intend for it to impede the medical efforts of doctors and researchers.
However, such a provision runs counter to a growing trend in the medical profession which considers firearms to be a matter of public health. Many health advocates and officials are worried that restricting the ability of doctors to compile information about their patient’s use of firearms will interfere with scientific research that could help prevent gun violence. Moreover, the Eichholz Law Firm points out that information regarding guns pales in comparison to data which is collected about automobiles and roads. Federally funded research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, for example, has resulted in significant safety improvements. Even though gun deaths could be higher than automobile death this year for the first time, federal funding for research on gun related injuries and deaths remains minimal. Proponents of gun rights for the most part remain opposed to funding for such research.
While the public health community pushes for the White House to amend the provision, the question of gun violence will become more and more relevant as Obama sets out to launch a new gun-control initiative this month.
The Eichholz Law Firm is an experienced and aggressive law firm that dedicates itself to representing personal injury victims and promoting responsible health care. Some of the firm’s verdicts include a $25 million settlement involving over 200 Viox Claims. It is currently based out of Savannah, GA