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Thread: Pediatricians

  1. #51
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    The pediatrician here never asked, and we never volunteered the information about firearms in our home.

    My wife's friends, however, are more of a mixed bag. She even asked me to limit conversation with her friend's husbands early on.

    I've managed to work it into conversation with most of the husbands I've met, and 2 out of 3 sheepishly admitted having a revolver in a box in the closet. It seems that they used to enjoy shooting, but marriage put a stop to that. Neither even had ammo in the house anymore.

    I'm still looking for an Attachment Parenting group that will go on outings to the range There are not enough tree-hugging-granola-crunchy people in this area who are willing to admit they believe in self defense!

  2. #52
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    now no longer owns a handgun.
    His choice. I only question it if he tells you that his choice should be your choice, too.
    the husbands I've met, and 2 out of 3 sheepishly admitted having a revolver in a box in the closet...they used to enjoy shooting, but marriage put a stop to that. Neither even had ammo in the house anymore.
    Who'da ever thought that we need a husbands' empowerment movement (Answer: anyone who's ever been married)?

    What's that whistling sound....INCOMING!

  3. #53
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    I had to take my son to the doc, strep going around the school and he found it. He informed the doc, female pediatrician, that he went hunting this year and got his first pheasant. The doc gave him a stern look and asked why he did not bring her a tail feather. Had to make a second trip to the doc.


    Len

  4. #54
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    Maybe I am just old fashioned, but I raised three and none of them ever went to a "pediatrician", just an old fashioned general family doctor who only asked directly health related questions. I'd still go the guy except he's now over 80 and I'm 800 miles away.
    Paul
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  5. #55
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    Now you all had better sit down for this one. I am a paramedic. Currently working on the private side while going to school to get BSN. ANyway we had a critical care team, we drive we had a neonatoligist (sp) a RT and Rn to do the real work. The doc sees my bag with ABC's of reloading and asks what I own. I tell her, she asks where I live, I tell her the town. Turns out she lives a couple of blocks away from me. She has a cary permit from her time in AZ. She has a .380 Bersa, she is still a fellow needs 1 more year before she is done. Anyway she says that when she came here from the Philippines the first thing she did in AZ was get her permit. She married a American who she met at home and now they live here and have a couple rug rats. Not all docs have cranial rectal inversion.

    Len

  6. #56
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    We interviewed our Pediatrician, not the other way around. Sorry if that comes across as a little snarky, but there it is. After all, you're negotiating for levels of access and trust on your kids' behalf, here. Darn well better earn and keep my confidence if I'm gonna let you handle my kids, and stick needles in them, and give them drugs...so, in essence, they need to give me some very good reasons to choose their services over their competitors', or I'll happily take my future debt load on out the door in search of better.

    On the other hand, it IS understandable to want to build a projected risk profile for your patients, based on environmental hazards and behaviors, but barriers and costs must be considered, too.

    Take care
    Last edited by Griff; March 27th, 2009 at 10:53 PM.
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  7. #57
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    They train us to ask about guns.

    I just completed my first year of med school. During the history taking, our instructors (full time clinicians) have us run down a list of things to ask. Guns in the household are on the list. There was nothing more to them than that, except the standard "consider getting a lock if you have kids" line.

    So don't take it personally if your doc asks. He is just running through a huge list of possible dangers. His job is to try to minimize all dangers and risk of injury, not report you to the BATFE. Now what advice he gives from there is his own opinion.

    The AAP has its own opinion and my uncle, a pediatrician, owns lots of guns and doesn't agree with them. Our class may even set up a medical student shooting club this summer. And we're all members of the AMA (and quite a few are NRA members too).


    (Oh also, long time lurker, decided to register and post.)

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by spartywrx
    "consider getting a lock if you have kids" line.

    So don't take it personally if your doc asks. He is just running through a huge list of possible dangers. His job is to try to minimize all dangers and risk of injury
    First off, welcome. I hope you find THR helpful and enjoyable.

    Second, best of luck in your studies. I wish you every success.

    And finally, to get to the meat of the matter, IF you are going to discuss matters of firearm safety, should you be asking the following:

    --Do you know the 4 Rules of gun safety?
    --Do you wear eye and ear protection when using your gun?
    --Are you aware of the research that suggests that keeping your gun locked and unloaded (that is, unavailable in case of emergency) may make your family less safe?
    --Do you have an age-appropriate plan in place for introducing your child(ren) to firearms safety, whether via denied access, limited supervised access, Eddie Eagle, having the child(ren) watch you handle firearms (positive modeling), hunter education, formal firearms safety training, etc. ?

    In other words, by asking about firearms in this context of "possible dangers," you may be sending the message that firearms are a net hazard (as opposed to a net safety benefit) for the family, and that the only way of mitigating that risk is to lock the gun away. Certainly, that IS the policy of the AAP.

    I would therefore respectfully suggest that you think about approaching firearms in another way. Sure, ask about firearms in the home (some here will disagree), and then ask open-ended questions, just as one is taught to do in taking all parts of patient histories: "Do you have a plan in place for firearms safety in the home? Do you have any questions about what such a plan might be?"

    Of course, inviting such questions presupposes you have some training in providing correct answers if you are asked. If you have the proper knowledge and training to answer such questions yourself, great!

    If not, then consider either getting the proper training yourself, or having available valid materials that discuss the matter (the NRA is a great resource), or a firearms safety instructor or two you can refer your patient's parents to.

    If you are not prepared to have this type of exchange, maybe it is better to NOT bring up the subject than to risk imparting or implying "advice" that may actually put the family at INCREASED risk.

    My best advice would of course be, as with any other subject, that you get the best knowledge and training about home firearm safety you can, and then decide for yourself how you can best meet the safety needs of your patients and their families.

    I DO think this is a proper topic for pediatricians and other physicians. I do NOT think the usual advice that pediatricians are trained to give is valid.

    For your consideration. Again, best of luck with your training, and glad you dropped by!

  9. #59
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    A few years ago I took my 10 year old son to the doctor for a physical for school. The young woman assistant asked him a series of questions, including, "Are their guns in your home? I emphatically told her, "That's none of your business!" She said she was required to ask. I told her, "We are not required to answer. That is not a medical question, it is political." I was shocked and angry that this was asked. We soon found a new doctor who did not ask this question.

    Think about it folks. Do you want it in your family medical records that you own guns? Have you considered that in the future that could be grounds for denial of coverage or higher rates? Remember your insurer has access to those records if they pay for service. What if a gun registration law is passed in the future? Call me paranoid if you wish, but I've lived long enough to have seen too many erosions of personal freedoms. If we go along with small "reasonable" things in order to "avoid a fuss" it just gets worse.

  10. #60
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    They train us to ask about guns.
    But they do not train you about guns.
    Guns in the household are on the list. There was nothing more to them than that, except the standard "consider getting a lock if you have kids" line.
    There are lawyers everywhere -- imagine some patient gets robbed and brutalized -- and sues you because of your advice about a lock.

    On the stand could you testify you are an expert on guns?

  11. #61
    I live in MA, but my Pediatrician has never asked about guns in the home. Then again, she's never asked about toxic chemicals or 5 gallon buckets in the home either. She's from Thailand and is very practical in her approach to health and child-rearing. That's why we like her.
    Yes, that's one of the reasons I like foreign doctors. They actually still believe that it's a doctors job to practice medicine and not give patronizing lectures about bicycle helmets, seat belts and guns in the home.

  12. #62
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    I have firearms and power tools...

    The power tools are locked up, my kids are more interested in tools than firearms...

  13. #63
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    On the stand could you testify you are an expert on guns?
    Or, potentially even worse: could you testify that you have even basic competency in firearms safety?

  14. #64
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    1. Yes, we were asked on our first visit, and I told them it was none of their business.
    2 & 3. It's a lot easier out here, because so many of the families are actively involved in hunting (and to a lesser degree target shooting). Even mentioning firearms back in CA caused all kinds of headaches -- teaching high school -- but here, the kids get into arguments about what firearm is best for deer/ducks/pheasants/etc. We talk about it openly in subjects like physics where ballistics is particularly applicable.
    Go Bears! Hate Red!

  15. #65
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    On the last visit to the MD, our son is questioned, in our presence, about diet, activities, etc. This discussion session is about 20 minutes of the 30 minute office visit. Nothing strange in this protocol, but for this: This physician discussed "questioning authority". How it is a good thing to "challenge" things your told, even "what your parents may tell you". That healthy discussion is a "good thing" and that it promotes "discussion and communication". There were no questions about firearms. Now while I have never been bashful to enter into a healthy discussion, about anything, I held my tongue during this visit. It took all I had to do so. Fortunately, we have a staunchly conservative 14 year old who immediately knew that his MD was full of crap with respect to his comments about "authority figures" and in particular, his own parents. We like this MD as a physician, but as a "therapist", not so much.
    Three things are necessary for the salvation of man: to know what he ought to believe; to know what he ought to desire; and to know what he ought to do.

  16. #66
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    We interviewed our Pediatrician, not the other way around. Sorry if that comes across as a little snarky, but there it is.
    Up until just a little while ago as time flies a doctor was considered a higher level servant. Respected for his knowledge, sure, but still in service to the family.

  17. #67
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    Up until just a little while ago as time flies a doctor was considered a higher level servant. Respected for his knowledge, sure, but still in service to the family.
    And he still is around here -- if he wants my business.

    I treat my doctor with respect. Just as I treat my mechanic, my plumber and the gal behind the register at Wal-Mart.

  18. #68
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    I've managed to work it into conversation with most of the husbands I've met, and 2 out of 3 sheepishly admitted having a revolver in a box in the closet. It seems that they used to enjoy shooting, but marriage put a stop to that. Neither even had ammo in the house anymore.
    Pick your battles wisely. For me, and I suspect most on this board, if she said "It's me or the guns." The ring would have never went on in the first place.

    No kids yet, but my doctor, my insurance agent, and my dentist are all shooters. Dentist even has a range in his basement......

    My siblings have had to have talks with thier kids docs since all this crap came out though. Pretty much along the lines of "Those sort of questions are out of line, and while we realize that it's now "policy" to ask them, you're on notice- Ask just once, and lose a patient."
    Life member NRA, GOA, CCRKBA. "The Founding Fathers put the capitol in a mosquito-infested swampy area, with miserable summers. They hoped that by doing that, the Congress would be less active. And then some sumbitch went and invented A/C and the country's never recovered..." --Art Eatman

  19. #69
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    "The doctor reminded us that they need to be kept locked up and away from the new-born infant and kids.
    Also reminded us about the chemicals under the sink, drowning risks and a whole slew of other things.
    ...A reminder is good."
    Firearms are a power tool quite different from jugs of bleach in my opinion. There are tens of thousands of actually -expert- volunteers who can really help people to understand use of a firearm ( http://www.nrahq.org/education/training/find.asp ) it's simply not reasonably in the purview of a medical doctor. More to the point the ASK program, which I think is what AAP was pushing here, was the brainchild of the Brady campaign. Not your friendly neighborhood Doc.
    In my case the PTA members of my left leaning home town all know who the local NRA instructor (and very active auction volunteer) is and that it's perfectly acceptable if their child doesn't play in our tree house. I count that as a minor security complication more then paid for with personal satisfaction.
    And publicity is a security complication that I consider when storing firearms. If your form is floating around your Doctors office you should too. -Boyd

  20. #70
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    I'm not a pediatrician, but I must have taken my Pediatrics rotation too long ago (graduated in '92). It was an inner-city hospital, with some VERY lefty professors, and I don't ever remember being instructed to ask about guns in the home, nor do I remember hearing an instructor ask a patient.

    The only conversations I ever have with patients about guns is along the lines of "would you like to go to the range with me?" or venting about liberty, 2A limitations and grabbers.
    "...But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong... If such a law - which may be an isolated case - is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system." --Frederic Bastiat (1849)

  21. #71
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    I'm always intrigued that it seems when someone earns a well deserved Doctorate in Medicine that somehow they assume automatically awarded Doctorates in EVERY single facet of our American culture...fascinating. I think it would be most appropriate that if I, a non-medical professional wish to make valid credible testimony in the field of Medicine, that I would be well advised to receive the appropriate training first ie an M.D.. Similarly, I would suggest that if physicians wish to offer advice to the public in the field of arms that they might be well advised to gain the appropriate expertise as well. Am I being unreasonable?

  22. #72
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    I'm always intrigued that it seems when someone earns a well deserved Doctorate in Medicine that somehow they assume automatically awarded Doctorates in EVERY single facet of our American culture...fascinating.
    You know, I have noticed that too... not with all, but with many. A CFP (certified financial planner) friend tells me her nightmare clients are doctors and lawyers, because so many are completely sure they know things they don't... her best clients, she says, are widows who have a lot of life experience but claim no special expertise.

    Like all generalizations and stereotypes this is flawed, but it is striking.
    Paul
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  23. #73
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    I'm always intrigued that it seems when someone earns a well deserved Doctorate in Medicine that somehow they assume automatically awarded Doctorates in EVERY single facet of our American culture.
    It's not just MDs. PhDs in the hard sciences don't seem to be that way, but I've heard a lot of it from English and Education Administration PhDs.
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  24. #74
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    Travlin pretty much hit it on the head.
    All medical records are going electronic. I don't think HIPPA is going to stop the insurance company of Big Bro from looking.

    AFS
    'Qui tacet consentit': To remain silent is to consent.

  25. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travlin
    Do you want it in your family medical records that you own guns? Have you considered that in the future that could be grounds for denial of coverage or higher rates?
    Interesting to note the different levels of objection to pediatricians in regard to asking about firearms.

    Re the "It'll be in your record" objection: I think it is reasonable to request that that info NOT be placed in your record, unless it is germane to an active medical issue (suicide risk, high lead blood levels, hearing loss, etc.). A very mundane statement, like "Safe storage of household hazards discussed" or "Proper protective gear for hobbies discussed," suffices any documentation needs for the MD.

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