Infectious Disease

20% of Colorado high schoolers say they have easy access to handguns

April 30, 2021

2 min read

ADD SUBJECT TO EMAIL ALARMS

Receive an email when new articles are published

Please enter your email address to receive an email when new articles are published . “data-action =” subscribe “> subscribe

We could not process your request. Please try again later. If you continue to have this problem, please contact customerservice@slackinc.com.

Back to Healio

Nearly 20% of Colorado college students who participated in the 2019 Colorado Healthy Child Survey said having access to acquiring a gun is easy, data from pediatrics showed.

For the study Ashley Brooks-Russell, PhD, MPH, Director of the Injury Prevention, Education, and Research Program at the Colorado School of Public Health, and colleagues rated the survey responses of 46,537 public students.

Source: Adobe Stock

Since access to firearms is a risk factor for suicide, the survey included a single new question for students: “If you want a new pistol, how easy would it be for you to get one?” Students had the following options to answer : very difficult, somehow difficult, somehow easy and very easy.

Overall, 60.6% of respondents said it was very difficult, 19.4% said it was quite difficult, 11.1% said it was easy, and 8.8% said it was very easy, one to get new pistol. The authors combined the categories simply and very simply to simplify the presentation, which amounted to around 20%.

Compared to female students, more male students said they were more accessible, while reports of ease increased according to grade level. No difference in ease of access through sexual orientation was reported, but a significantly higher proportion of transgender teens reported ease of access compared to cisgender teens.

Those who reported being Native American or multiracial had the highest reported easy access at 23.8% and 23.3%, respectively. It was followed by white (21.3%), Spanish (18.2%), black (16.9%) and Asian (12.2%) students.

“We can use these findings to inform strategies to educate parents about the importance of keeping home weapons safe, especially when an adolescent is at risk of suicide,” the authors write.

In a separate study Shilpa J. Patel, MD, MPH, an attending physician at Children’s National Hospital in Washington, DC, and colleagues performed a cross-sectional analysis of national ED visits for a firearm injury in children under the age of 21 between 2009 and 2016.

Using the national emergency room sample, the authors assessed a total of 178,299 ED visits with a gun injury, with an annual average of 22,287 visits.

The mean age for reporting an ED was 17.9 years (CI 95%, 17.8-18), and 67% of all gun-related injuries were between 18 and 21 years old. The most commonly reported injuries were to the extremity (48.9%), with 6% of visits after presentation to the ED resulting in death.

More than a third of injuries were unintentional (39.4%), and the likelihood was higher in children up to 12 years of age than in children aged 18 to 21 years (OR = 3.5; 95% CI, 3-4) .

Injuries resulting from self-harm made up the smallest population (1.7%). However, the likelihood of self-harm was lower in children under 12 years of age (OR = 0.3; 95% CI, 0.2-0.6) than in children aged 18 to 21 years.

Attack-related injuries accounted for 37.7% of all injuries and occurred less frequently in children up to 12 years of age (OR = 0.4; 95% CI 0.3-0.4) than in children aged 18 to 21 years. A rural ED was also 70% less likely to have an injury-related injury than an urban ED (OR = 0.3; 95% CI, 0.3-0.4).

“As a first step, our results support screening for access to weapons in young children presenting in rural hospitals and advice on safe storage. Fatal means access to screening and counseling for suicide patients, in rural areas and in higher regions [socioeconomic status (SES)] the settings; and screening for risk of attack and / or exposure to violence and access to weapons in urban, lower SES environments, ”the authors wrote.

References:

Brooks-Russel A. et al. Pediatrics. 2021; doi: 10.1542 / peds.2020-015834.

Patel SJ et al. Pediatrics. 2021; doi: 10.1542 / peds.2020-011957.

ADD SUBJECT TO EMAIL ALARMS

Receive an email when new articles are published

Please enter your email address to receive an email when new articles are published . “data-action =” subscribe “> subscribe

We could not process your request. Please try again later. If you continue to have this problem, please contact customerservice@slackinc.com.

Back to Healio

Related Articles