WASHINGTON — Dr. Dan Murphy, an emergency physician from Garden City, NY, spoke Thursday at a Gun Violence Prevention Task Force Staff Briefing on Capitol Hill, sponsored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and other members of the congressional task force.
“I’m grateful to have had Garden City’s own Dr. Dan Murphy at our briefing in D.C., said Rep. McCarthy. “Reducing gun violence is one of the top issues being debated in Washington today and Dr. Murphy has lent valuable perspective and expertise as a medical professional. His counsel reminds us that reducing gun violence is first and foremost about public health and safety and all Americans should be working together towards it.”
Dr. Murphy — the New York chapter president of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and a trauma expert — talked about his experiences inside the emergency department dealing with victims of assault weapons and how the problem appears to be getting worse.
“We have to get in the mode of thinking of this not as a political issue, but as a public safety issue,” said Dr. Murphy “We’re tragically getting better at this [assault weapons violence] and we don’t want to be. We want to prevent it and we want to avoid these injuries that are happening.”
Other members on the panel were Kristen Rand of the Violence Policy Center and Commander Melvin Scott with the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, D.C.
ACEP deplores the improper use of firearms resulting in death and injury — like the recent mass shootings in Tucson, Ariz; Aurora, Colo; and Newtown, Conn. For several decades, ACEP has endorsed efforts to decrease the threat to public safety that results from the widespread availability of assault weapons and high capacity ammunition feeding devices including a ban on the sale of assault weapons and high capacity magazines.
In 2010, more than 73,000 Americans were treated in hospital emergency departments for non-fatal gunshot wounds, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For every person who dies of a gunshot wound, two others are wounded.
We urge policymakers to restore dedicated funding for firearms prevention research and we fully support legislation that supports principles of ACEP’s policy on firearms injury prevention.
ACEP is the national medical specialty society representing emergency medicine. ACEP is committed to advancing emergency care through continuing education, research and public education. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, ACEP has 53 chapters representing each state, as well as Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. A Government Services Chapter represents emergency physicians employed by military branches and other government agencies.