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What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries?

What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries? Firearms account for a substantial proportion of external causes of death, injury, anddisability across the world. Legislation to regulate firearms has often been passed withthe intent of reducing problems related to their use. However, lack of clarity aroundwhich interventions are effective remains a major challenge for policy development. Aimingto meet this challenge, we systematically reviewed studies exploring the associationsbetween firearm-related laws and firearm homicides, suicides, and unintentionalinjuries/deaths. We restricted our search to studies published from 1950 to 2014. Evidencefrom 130 studies in 10 countries suggests that in certain nations the simultaneousimplementation of laws targeting multiple firearms restrictions is associated withreductions in firearm deaths. Laws restricting the purchase of (e.g., background checks)and access to (e.g., safer storage) firearms are also associated with lower rates ofintimate partner homicides and firearm unintentional deaths in children, respectively.Limitations of studies include challenges inherent to their ecological design, theirexecution, and the lack of robustness of findings to model specifications. High qualityresearch on the association between the implementation or repeal of firearm legislation(rather than the evaluation of existing laws) and firearm injuries would lead to a betterunderstanding of what interventions are likely to work given local contexts. Thisinformation is key to move this field forward and for the development of effectivepolicies that may counteract the burden that firearm injuries pose on populations. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Epidemiologic Reviews Oxford University Press

What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries?

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References (155)

Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
ISSN
0193-936X
eISSN
1478-6729
DOI
10.1093/epirev/mxv012
pmid
26905895
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Firearms account for a substantial proportion of external causes of death, injury, anddisability across the world. Legislation to regulate firearms has often been passed withthe intent of reducing problems related to their use. However, lack of clarity aroundwhich interventions are effective remains a major challenge for policy development. Aimingto meet this challenge, we systematically reviewed studies exploring the associationsbetween firearm-related laws and firearm homicides, suicides, and unintentionalinjuries/deaths. We restricted our search to studies published from 1950 to 2014. Evidencefrom 130 studies in 10 countries suggests that in certain nations the simultaneousimplementation of laws targeting multiple firearms restrictions is associated withreductions in firearm deaths. Laws restricting the purchase of (e.g., background checks)and access to (e.g., safer storage) firearms are also associated with lower rates ofintimate partner homicides and firearm unintentional deaths in children, respectively.Limitations of studies include challenges inherent to their ecological design, theirexecution, and the lack of robustness of findings to model specifications. High qualityresearch on the association between the implementation or repeal of firearm legislation(rather than the evaluation of existing laws) and firearm injuries would lead to a betterunderstanding of what interventions are likely to work given local contexts. Thisinformation is key to move this field forward and for the development of effectivepolicies that may counteract the burden that firearm injuries pose on populations.

Journal

Epidemiologic ReviewsOxford University Press

Published: Jan 1, 2016

Keywords: death; firearms; homicide; legislation; suicide; weapons; wounds and injuries

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