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Florida Chapter of NAPNAP

NAPNAP opposes FL gun law that would fail to protect children

Posted over 7 years ago by Melissa Kelly

Please read the following in regard to this proposed law and contact your legislator today!

NAPNAP Opposes Florida Gun Legislation that would fail to protect children 

Cherry Hill, NJ (April 19, 2011) - The National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners joins The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Florida Pediatric Society and other and medical professionals in expressing opposition to the advancement of Florida Senate Bill 432 and House Bill 155, legislation which would restrict a licensed medical care practitioner or health care facility's ability to ask patients and parents simple counseling questions about gun safety without fear of sanctions from the state medical board.

 If enacted, these bills would limit a health care provider’s capacity to effectively care for children and families.

Accidental injuries continue to be the leading cause of death in children older than 1 year.  Pediatric Nurse Practitioners play a key role in injury prevention by providing anticipatory guidance to parents during office visits to help minimize the risk of injury in children. Several aspects of the patient’s home are discussed during a visit, including swimming pools, hazardous chemicals, smoke detectors, medications, and firearms. These conversations help pediatric health care providers partner with parents to keep their children safe. 

The presence of a firearm in a home increases the risk of suicide even among those without a previous psychiatric diagnosis. The increased risk of suicide is particularly prominent for younger people where guns are stored loaded and/or unlocked in the home. 

The patient-pediatric health care provider relationship is a confidential one. “Legislation that inhibits the healthcare provider’s ability to fully communicate with patients or parents puts the patient’s health and well-being at risk. These bills could be extremely detrimental to the safety our Nation’s children and families” said Cheri Barber, DNP, CPNP, NAPNAP President-Elect. 

NAPNAP calls on Florida’s lawmakers to reject this legislation and to keep children safe by maintaining a strong pediatric healthcare provider-patient-family relationship

Please contact your state legislators to oppose this bill. You can call your state Senator Michael S. Bennett, Member of the Florida Senate from the 21st district. Click here to view the Senator Bennett’s information