Guess what the doctor asked me...


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Partisan Ranger
November 24, 2003, 10:44 AM
I went to the doctor last week feeling under the weather. During the routine examination, she asked me a few standard questions....

1. History of heart disease in your family?
2. History of diabetes?
3. Are you allergic to any medications?

etc....and then....

"Do you have any guns in the home?"

THAT took me for a loop. She's a very nice lady and a good doctor, so I didn't get indignant.

"Yes."

Next question:

"Are they locked up?"

"Yes." (Which is true -- I have both pistols in GunVault gun safes, but I let my kid handle my guns when I'm around -- bet THAT wouldn't please her!)

I guess they ask about guns because she has treated our kid and knows there are kids in the house?

When did doctors start butting their noses into guns in the house?

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lee n. field
November 24, 2003, 10:49 AM
Years ago.

The proper answer is either "none of you business" or "of course".

TarpleyG
November 24, 2003, 10:52 AM
Definitely would have told her it's non of her business because it isn't. Not an attempt to be rude but my physician has no need to know if I have guns at home no more than she needs to know what kind of car I drive or if I have golf clubs in the garage.

GT

FPrice
November 24, 2003, 10:52 AM
"Are they locked up?"

My answer, "Why, are you planning to invade my home?".

George Hill
November 24, 2003, 10:58 AM
"No... No guns..."

I don't need my name on any more "To Do" lists.

Bob
November 24, 2003, 11:06 AM
If you answer this, it goes in your permanent medical record. You have no idea where this information will go. How do I know? I'm a registered nurse.
My personal view is that this question is out of line. I don't believe they have a right to know, so I have no obligation to answer truthfully.
Bob

12-34hom
November 24, 2003, 11:09 AM
My responce would have been - Why do you ask?

I'm sure all the folks that live around my house are aware that i have firearms.

But someone who is pretty much a stranger, I would have to have some valid reason before i answered that question.

12-34hom.

TallPine
November 24, 2003, 11:14 AM
Reason 10,001 to avoid doctors.


You were feeling "under the weather" ... ? Then you must be depressed.

You have guns ...? Guess what the next step is ...

cidirkona
November 24, 2003, 11:16 AM
Well, any time you are in a car accident or in any medical legal suit, health insurance, or similar - any company that has the HIPAA rights can get to your files. Granted - most of the time you will still need to give them permission, but your Family Physician or whatever doctor saw you can "CC" any doctors as "Reffering Physicians." These doctors will recieve all 'related' medical information they want about you - aka charts, reports, etc.

-Colin (from a radiology company in Arizona)

AJ Dual
November 24, 2003, 11:19 AM
A good answer is "Doctor, you know what a boundry violation is, right?"

That should be all it takes.

It's an excellent shot across the bow for anyone in the medical profession. Should cause an immediate :what: reaction.

"Boundary Violations" is excellent medical ethics jargon for a whole host of offenses, mainly "getting too close and personal". It also implies that you're well informed on medical disciplinary oversight and methedology. Any doc that dosen't run for the hills on the topic of guns when they hear those words, or gets argumentative, has other ego issues and they shouldn't be your physician anyway.

It's also a great response because it pits one portion of medical ethics against another in thier own minds, and may encourage some thought on the matter.

sm
November 24, 2003, 11:22 AM
This came about I believe from some Ins Co originally. Many Medical grps ( various Ns. ,Psych,Drs...etc., not pro gun).

Personally My Docs I use are shooters, GP, Eyes, Ortho, General Surgeons. As are many of the nurses and other staff. So are my personal ins agents.

My docs and their nurses don't ask, we are too busy talking guns, holsters, ammo , hunting...RKBA..."anti paper drill " cuts into quality assessment time.( why I'm there and gun stuff)

Support among like kind is what I practice

USGuns
November 24, 2003, 11:31 AM
That's a political question driven by the AMA and is complete BS and none of there business. As was said before, I'd keep it out of your medical records and say "no" in the future. It's pretty sad, really...

ElToro
November 24, 2003, 11:40 AM
"It's also a great response because it pits one portion of medical ethics against another in thier own minds, and may encourage some thought on the matter."

yeah it pits their sense of a fat lawsuit and their malpractice premium going into the stratosphere, square against the party line from their superiors... I love it...

note to self.... "boundary violation" memorize the phrase

simon
November 24, 2003, 11:58 AM
I too will memorize the phraze" boundry violation" should the question ever be asked..

Josh
November 24, 2003, 12:05 PM
I found a pretty good resource from our friends at Doctors for Sensible Gun Laws.

http://www.dsgl.org/BVD.htm

Boundry violation. You're darn tootin.

Josh

Andrew Rothman
November 24, 2003, 12:08 PM
A good answer is "Doctor, you know what a boundry violation is, right?"

Excellent information, Andrew. I had no idea.

For those who care to read further, here's a very good article:


http://www.tysknews.com/Depts/2nd_Amend/boundary_violation.htm

Boundary Violation:
Gun Politics in the Doctor’s Office
Timothy Wheeler, MD


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Appeared originally in the Medical Sentinel of the
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons,
March/April 1999, pp. 60-61

Imagine this scenario: you visit your doctor for back pain. Your doctor asks if you have firearms in your home. Then he announces that your family would be better off (especially your children) if you had no guns at all in your house. You leave the doctor’s office feeling uneasy, wondering what guns have to do with your backache. Does your doctor care about your family’s safety? Or instead, did he use your trust and his authority to advance a political agenda?
American families may soon find themselves in this scenario. Social activists are taking their war on gun ownership to a new battleground: the doctor’s office. (1) The American Medical Association (AMA) (2), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) (3), and American College of Physicians (ACP) (4) are urging doctors to probe their patients about guns in their homes. They profess concern for patient safety. But their ulterior motive is a political prejudice against guns and gun owners. And that places their interventions into the area of unethical physician conduct called boundary violations.

Doctor-patient sex is the most well-known and sensational example of a boundary violation. More recent literature recognizes a wide variety of nonsexual violations. (5) These cover such issues as finances, confidentiality, and gratification of the doctor’s needs. Although boundary violations were first addressed in the psychiatry literature, it has become clear that they also occur in general medical practice. (6)

Boundaries in the doctor-patient relationship derive naturally from the relationship’s fiduciary nature. In general, "treatment boundaries can be defined as the set of rules that establishes the professional relationship as separate from other relationships and protects the patient from harm. A patient who seeks medical or psychiatric treatment is often in a uniquely dependent, anxious, vulnerable, and exploitable state. In seeking help, patients assume positions of relative powerlessness in which they expose their weaknesses, compromise their dignity, and reveal intimacies of body or mind, or both." (7)

Thus compromised, the patient relies heavily on the physician to act only in the patient’s interest and not the physician’s. A doctor must put the patient’s needs before his own. But a physician reverses the priorities when because of passionate political beliefs he tries to influence his patient against guns. This physician puts his own need to "do something" about the perceived evil of guns before the needs of his patient. He crosses the line from healer to political activist. Such doctor-on-patient political activism is recognized in Epstein and Simon’s Exploitation Index (8) as a boundary violation.

Just as some physician sexual transgressors may insist their sex relations with a patient are therapeutic, the activist doctor may protest that he only seeks to prevent "gun violence." However, the conduct of the medical activists strongly indicates that their interest in patients’ guns is political, not therapeutic.

The AAP, ACP, and AMA are members of the Handgun Epidemic Lowering Plan (HELP) Network, based in Chicago. HELP is an exclusive advocacy group dedicated to banning guns. Physicians who disagree with HELP’s anti-gun agenda are barred from attending HELP’s conferences, a policy unthinkable in any scientific organization. HELP’s founder and leader Dr. Katherine Christoffel has compared guns to viruses that must be eradicated. (9) The group’s militant advocacy has no place for differing viewpoints on firearms, and apparently neither do the medical organizations which have signed on as HELP members.

In fact, the AAP has adopted its "gun safety instruction" patient materials from the gun-ban lobby Handgun Control, Inc. (HCI). The AAP and Handgun Control, Inc.’s informational wing the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence advise families in their STOP pamphlet, "The safest thing is to not have a gun in your home, especially not a handgun." (10) And a survey of pediatricians showed 76% supported a ban on handguns. (11) Patients who seek objective advice on firearm safety should not look to pediatricians as a group. And any doctor should know that patient counseling based on these materials is politics, not medicine.

Perhaps the most revealing aspect of organized medicine’s anti-gun bias is its persistent refusal to address the criminology literature on guns. For over twenty years, criminologists have studied firearms, their use and misuse, their risks and benefits. Especially in the last two years prominent researchers have found that firearm ownership is not the scourge that medical activists have claimed it to be. The best and latest research finds that private gun ownership by responsible citizens not only is safe, but protects the individual as well as his community from violent crime. (12)

One would think that medical firearm researchers would be intensely interested in this scholarship. But so far the editorial boards of the journals of the AAP, AMA, and ACP have neither responded to nor acknowledged it. With their silence these editors have effectively ended whatever credibility they had in firearm research. That field of study is apparently useful to them only as a vehicle for the advancement of their political goal of gun prohibition. When the scientific process yields knowledge contrary to that goal, activists either attack its author (13) or ignore it altogether. Such conduct is inexcusable in any area of scientific endeavor. Honest scientists face conflicting data objectively. And honest doctors do not use biased research to give false authority to their negative feelings about guns.

So how can a patient tell if his doctor’s advice about guns is good preventive medicine or political activism? Patients can assess a doctor’s advice by keeping the following questions in mind:

Does the doctor respect your right to keep guns? Or does he subtly send a message that guns are somehow bad? Moral judgments about the right to self defense, hunting, or other legitimate uses of guns are not acceptable subjects for a doctor talking to a patient. Does the doctor quote statistics from the American Academy of Pediatrics or the American Medical Association about the supposed risks of guns in the home? Do you see anti-gun posters or pamphlets from these organizations in her office? These materials are based on the "advocacy science" of anti-gun activists like Dr. Arthur Kellermann, much of which was funded by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Congress cut off all the CDC’s 1997 funding for gun research because of the CDC’s anti-gun bias. (14) No doctor who knows firearms would base her advice on this frankly political literature. Is the doctor familiar with the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) Eddie Eagle gun safety program for children, or other established gun safety education programs? If not, is she interested in learning about them? Unlike the AAP’s Stop program, Eddie Eagle educational materials for children contain no political or moral judgment about guns. This NRA program has been honored by the National Safety Council, the American Legion, and the governments of 19 states. The Eddie Eagle slogan "If you see a gun, Stop, Don’t touch, Leave the area, Tell an adult" was even endorsed by the generally anti-gun California Medical Association (CMA). (15) Despite intense publicity for the AAP’s Stop program and similar initiatives, most doctors shy away from scrutinizing their patients’ gun ownership. In a recent study 91% of surveyed doctors felt that firearm violence is a public health issue. But only 3% said they frequently talk to patients about firearms in the home. Two thirds of the surveyed doctors said they never talk to patients about the subject. (16) This may indicate that although they are generally concerned about firearm injuries, doctors do not see politically motivated patient counseling as appropriate professional conduct.

In a revealing section, the AAP’s Stop speaker’s kit warns would-be lecturers of "resistant audiences" who may disagree with them on scientific or ideological grounds. One section offers talking points for dealing with these "challenging individuals." (17) The kit’s authors seem to anticipate their audiences may recognize its political nature.

Patients do have remedies for the boundary-crossing doctor. In today’s competitive health care market most patients can choose from many doctors. Changing doctors is the simplest solution. A written complaint to the health plan’s membership services department can send a powerful message that boundary violations by doctors will not be tolerated. If the problem persists, patients can file a complaint with the doctor’s state licensing board. Medical licensing boards are increasingly aware of the problem of boundary violations. Although state boards have addressed primarily sexual and financial misconduct, the broad principles they have developed to guide doctors in these areas apply to the entire doctor-patient relationship. (18, 19)

The author cannot advise the reader to take a particular course of action. A patient confronted with physician misconduct must decide for himself which action, if any, to take. But patients should realize they do have choices in dealing with physician boundary violations involving political activism, especially in such personal matters as firearm ownership. And physicians should be aware of the personal risks they take when they bring political activism into the exam room.

Endnotes

1 HELP Network News, Winter / Spring 1998, p. 1. This quarterly newsletter is published by the Handgun Epidemic Lowering Plan (HELP) Network.

2 Ibid. p. 2.

3 American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statement, vol. 89, no. 4, April, Part 2, 1992, pp. 788-790.

4 American College of Physicians Position Paper, "Firearm Injury Prevention," Annals of Internal Medicine, 1998, vol. 128, no. 3, p. 238.

5 Frick, D., "Nonsexual Boundary Violations in Psychiatric Treatment," Review of Psychiatry, vol. 13, (Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Press, Inc.), 1994, pp. 415-432.

6 Hundert, E., and Appelbaum, P., "Boundaries in Psychotherapy: Model Guidelines," Psychiatry, vol. 58, November 1995, pp. 346-347.

7 See reference 5, p. 416.

8 See reference 5, pp. 418-419 reprinted with permission from the Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 165-166, The Menninger Foundation, 1992.

9 Somerville, J., "Gun Control as Immunization," American Medical News, Jan. 3, 1994, p. 9.

10 "Keep Your Family Safe From Firearm Injury," American Academy of Pediatrics and Center to Prevent Handgun Violence, 1996.

11 Olson, L., and Christoffel, K., "Pediatricians’ Experience With and Attitudes Toward Firearms," Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, vol. 151, April 1997.

12 Lott, J., More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press), 1998.

13 Ibid. pp. 122-157.

14 Report from the Committee on Appropriations, U.S. House of Representatives: Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill, 1997, p. 49.

15 California Medical Association, Actions of the House of Delegates 1995, San Francisco 1995, Resolution 109-95, p. 9. The Eddie Eagle slogan was originally introduced in a resolution crediting its creator, the National Rifle Association (NRA). But the CMA Delegates refused to mention the NRA in the final version of Resolution 109-95, preferring instead to credit the California Department of Justice. This agency had adopted the Eddie Eagle slogan in its own gun safety program.

16 Cassel, C.K., and Nelson, B., "Internists’ and Surgeons’ Attitudes Toward Guns and Firearm Injury Prevention," Annals of Internal Medicine, 1998; vol. 128, pp. 224-30.

17 American Academy of Pediatrics, "Preventing Firearm Injury: Protecting Our Children Speaker’s Kit," tab 1, section 5, Elk Grove Village (Illinois), 1998.

18 Medical Board of California Action Report, April 1996, p. 3, California Department of Consumer Affairs, Sacramento, California.
Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine, "General Guidelines Related to the Maintenance of Boundaries in the Practice of Psychotherapy by Physicians (Adult Patients)," Boston. [B]

Partisan Ranger
November 24, 2003, 12:11 PM
In the future, I'll be better prepared if I am ever asked about guns at a doctor's office again.

I should probably tell her to delete the info from my record, not that she probably would. :(

Spieler
November 24, 2003, 12:16 PM
I have had three or four different doctors over the past few years and each time I fill out the new patient history forms these questions and the like seem to be there....and I always cross the section out. None of their business and I have never been questioned further on it.

RTFM
November 24, 2003, 12:28 PM
Very interesting, thanks AndrewWalkowiak.

Just a basic search on Google
http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=boundary+violation
brings some real interesting info.

Like
http://www.haciendapub.com/article14.html

The AAP [American Academy of Pediatrics], ACP [American College of Physicians], and AMA [American Medical Association] are members of the Handgun Epidemic Lowering Plan (HELP) Network, based in Chicago. HELP is an exclusive advocacy group dedicated to banning guns.* Physicians who disagree with HELP's anti-gun agenda are barred from attending HELP's conferences, a policy unthinkable in any scientific organization. HELP's founder and leader Dr. Katherine Christoffel has compared guns to viruses that must be eradicated.(9) The group's militant advocacy has no place for differing viewpoints on firearms, and apparently neither do the medical organizations which have signed on as HELP members.

In fact, the AAP has adopted its "gun safety instruction" patient materials from the gun-ban lobby Handgun Control, Inc. (HCI). The AAP and Handgun Control, Inc.'s informational wing the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence advise families in their STOP pamphlet, "The safest thing is to not have a gun in your home, especially not a handgun."(10) And a survey of pediatricians showed 76 percent supported a ban on handguns.(11) Patients who seek objective advice on firearm safety should not look to pediatricians as a group. And any doctor should know that patient counseling based on these materials is politics, not medicine.


Nice to know that by liking handguns, I am medically afflicted. Even caught up in a devastating epidemic.

RTFM

Nightfall
November 24, 2003, 12:40 PM
Does the doctor ever ask you about your driving habits? Whether or not you wear safety goggles when operating certain tools? Whether or not you lock your doors at night? Then why the hell should they know whether you provide for your own defense?

‘Boundary violation' sounds good...

TheeBadOne
November 24, 2003, 12:48 PM
Most of my Docs hunt & fish, some with me. :D

fish2xs
November 24, 2003, 01:33 PM
Those of you that have kids.... WATCH OUT!

Some doctors offices give kids a form to fill out and give directly back to the nurse, without
any parent ever being aware of it! This is done under the guise of uncovering domestic
abuse. If red flags go up, the state gets involved. Some questions can include:

"Have you ever been in a car driven by someone who has been drinking?"
(Hmmm.. Dad did have a glass of wine at the resteraunt last night)

"Do your parents fight?"
(Oh no, that never happens.)

and our personal favorite:

"Is there a gun in your house?"

My daughter got this at a doctor's visit when she was 14. Luckily she's savvy enough
to have 'properly' answered the questions.

Personally, I just tell them what they want to hear (ie. 'no guns').

Spackler
November 24, 2003, 01:36 PM
I've never had a doctor ask me that question. My "primary care physician", as they insurance company calls him, is pro-gun and carries on a regular basis. We usually spend a few minutes talking about firearms each time I see him.

45R
November 24, 2003, 01:51 PM
Get any flak for gun ownership as them how many people in their profession have killed patients from prescription medication, complications from surgerie...etc. They will change the tone real fast.

RustyHammer
November 24, 2003, 02:07 PM
"Well, Doc ...... as long as we're getting to know each other better, let me ask you THIS ...... are yours real or are they silicon?"

:D

fix
November 24, 2003, 02:11 PM
If you answer this, it goes in your permanent medical record. You have no idea where this information will go. How do I know? I'm a registered nurse.

Under HIPAA regulations I'd damn well better know where that information goes.

Hot brass
November 24, 2003, 02:42 PM
My reply would have been, what does guns have to do with this?
And its not your buisness.

cdbeaver
November 24, 2003, 02:45 PM
Like some of the other posters on this thread, my family physician is firearms friendly. No . . . he's a dedicated gun nut.

Last time I visited his office he whipped out a .500 S&W cartridge and asked, "Have you ever seen one of these?" I hadn't, most especially in a doctor's office.

Every time I see him (medically), he has to tell my about his latest hunting or fishing experience. He was delighted to inform me that in two days he and his shooting partner had popped more than 600 primers while on a prairie dog hunting excursion.

I really like the guy.

treeprof
November 24, 2003, 02:58 PM
I've never been asked that question, and wouldn't respond if I was. I have my blood lead levels tested as part of my annual physical, so my primary care doc knows I'm into firearms. But, he's also a shooter and hunter. The office phlebotomist's mother was a competitive skeet shooter and served as an subject editor for some gun-related publication, so she and I usually talk abt shooting while she's taking blood for various lab tests. My optometrist and optician are both shooters, as well.

rangerbill
November 24, 2003, 03:25 PM
at the kids doctors interviews. i have the wife to just say "no we don't have any"

on a side note ;) theres a question about do you use well water or city water?" i told her if any one asks to tell them its city water. (there's some sort of a silly regulation about kids drinking well water) anyway wife gets all these coached answers mixed up and says "well water"
she realized she has goofed after she said it. next question is "is it floridated?" :D :D wife who doesn't know just blurted out "yes" because it sounded right. They accepted that and never said anything about it. just shows them people don't know what they're even asking.:D

i always figured if they came back on it i'd tell'em i installed a floridator on the well.:D :D

Kentucky Rifle
November 24, 2003, 03:35 PM
My doctor is a shooter. He wouldn't allow a question like this to be asked in his office. He's also a buddy. He told me that there are several areas where AMA membership is mandatory. The way he explained it to me is that the AMA has recommended these "guideline questions". He's not a member of the AMA.
(Sheesh! Can't the "Libs" find another trumped up issue to exploit?:mad: This one is getting a little long in the tooth.)

KR

matis
November 24, 2003, 03:40 PM
AT my last doctors visit (he's a gun person, too) the form asked my race.

I wrote "Martian".

Did the same at the outpatient surgery.


It spread through the staff at both places and when my doc (friend) telephoned me for something, he mentioned this as well. I had fun.


I know why they ask, but I think it's no business of theirs what my race is.



matis

moa
November 24, 2003, 04:33 PM
The AMA and the medical community in general need to clean up their act before they even think about firearms issues or anything else.

90,000 people die each year because of medical misadventures. And, about 2 million come down with infections in hospitals, some of these infections are caused by antibiotic immune germs. Many of these infections are spread from patient to patient by doctors and other medical staff who practice poor patient handling hygiene.

There are actually some valid reasons why malpractice insurance is so high.

goober
November 24, 2003, 04:42 PM
It is interesting how quickly all of you will jump on physicians as a group. Just as you cannot judge a group of people by one person's actions, you should not judge the medical profession by one doctor's line of questioning.

As a physician, nothing suprises me. Perhaps the physician had a prior experience with a patient that left loaded firearms around his young children and needed education. It may or may not be her right to ask the question, and if you have a problem with it just don't answer, it is as simple as that.

As far as this "boundary violation" BS, it wouldn't do a damn thing to change how I acted or what I asked a patient. As long as I know that I am not stepping outside the bounds I need to practice medicine, you can say anything you want to. People sometimes get offended by anything no matter what you say.

Walk a mile in a man's (or woman's) shoes before you judge him (or her). Especially before you judge a whole profession. A lot of us are certified gun nuts (well, not enough in my mind, but oh well).

Greg

Andrew Rothman
November 24, 2003, 04:47 PM
AT my last doctors visit (he's a gun person, too) the form asked my race.

I wrote "Martian".

Good goin', smart aleck.

There are multiple reasons to ask for the information.

* It helps in collecting aggregate information about the care of people, to help identify race-based problems in the system.

* Your race is directly related to your risk for certain diseases and conditions.

* Blacks are at a higher risk of high blood pressure, sickle cell anemia, and other conditions.

* Asians boys can be susceptible to Kawasaki's.

* Sephardic Jews get Familial Mediterranean Fever.

* Cystic fibrosis is a common genetic disorder in people of northern European descent, but far less so in Africans.

(Here's a fascinating story: http://www.post-gazette.com/healthscience/20020507hgene0507p3.asp )

keyhole
November 24, 2003, 04:49 PM
Maybe not tell them I have any guns, just hundreds of knives!:evil:


And a swimmin pool without a fence!:neener:


More of their business.

goober
I will have to agree with you partially regarding dr's. Not all have bad intentions, and several I know belong to the local gun range.

Moondancer
November 24, 2003, 04:55 PM
I've never been asked, but I think my first response would be a simple "I don't see how that has anything to do with what I am paying you to do, so just cross it off your list and forget it."

Note the use of the words "... I am paying you to do...". He/she is a supplier, not a customer and I choose what I willing to tell him/her. I've had to do this with a couple Dr.'s in the past, and I no longer take my business to them.

Spackler
November 24, 2003, 04:56 PM
It is interesting how quickly all of you will jump on physicians as a group.

If you read back through the posts, you'll find that not "all of us" did.

Guntalk
November 24, 2003, 05:03 PM
Dr. Greg: (Goober)

You might find it interesting to read about the background of this. I suggest Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership. In fact, if you are a shooter, I suggest you join.


http://www.dsgl.org/BVD.htm


I can guarantee I would not only MENTION "boundry violation," but I would file a formal complaint to whatever the state medical board is about it.

Doctors are easy to find. There's another one just around the corner.

Do the research. This has nothing to do with health care. I have talked with Dr. Tim Wheeler (DRGO) at length on this. He would be happy to fill you in. We need more doctors (like you?) who can speak out on this issue.

XavierBreath
November 24, 2003, 05:20 PM
I just wanted to add, as a patient you are free to refuse to answer any question you like. There is no need to get confrontational, remain cordial, and simply say you refuse to answer that question. As a Registered Nurse, I am required to ask some questions that are somewhat uncomfortable for me to ask. Medicare and insurance companies require medical professionals to ask all kinds of irrelevant questions (at least irrelevant regarding their medical care). I explain to a patient that they have a total right to refuse to answer such questions, and that it will not impact their care before I ask them. Asserting your right to refuse to answer such a question should not affect your care. Becoming confrontational and alienating your physician might affect your care though. Simply refuse to answer.


Keep in mind also that the information is likely used for statistics as much as anything else. The more gun owners who answer this question in the affirmative, and who do NOT have accidental firearms deaths in their families, the better all gun owners look statisically. It also gives us a much broader power base politically. Just something to think about. It's also fine to ask how the information will be used, and who is asking for it as well. The main point though, is that your medical care will not be diminished if you simply refuse to answer.

For the record, this is a question that I do NOT think a patient should be asked. I may still be required someday to ask it, but I will preface it with a reminder to the patients of their right to refuse to answer.

Ala Dan
November 24, 2003, 05:31 PM
My reply would have been, "No mam, just the one I got
on me, and oh yes its locked up". :uhoh: I bet that would have gotten a stare! :D

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

Guntalk
November 24, 2003, 05:37 PM
PLEASE! Stop and think about this.

This question is political, not medical.

It is not required by any law nor any insurance I know of.

It is suggested by the AMA, which is a totally anti-gun organization.

The only way we can stop this practice is to always, every time, make a big deal of it.

The doctor CHOSES to ask the question. He or she can darn well choose not to, and I think it is our duty to push them in that direction.

Next, it will be questions about how many guns, what calibers, any "junk guns?", any "assault weapons", did you buy any without getting the government's permission (private sale), etc.

The answer should be, "Doctor, I think that is not only none of your business, but I think that asking it invades my privacy and forces your political agenda upon me and my family. I think it's a boundary violation, and I intend to inquire of the state medical board whether it agrees with me. I value your services, but this is an important issue to me, and I would rerquest that you no longer ask me or any other patient about our firearms ownership. The examination room is no place for gun control politics."

If you won't do that, then what the hell are you good for?

By the way, do you know your doctor's first name?

XavierBreath
November 24, 2003, 06:05 PM
Tom,
I understand what you are saying, I agree with you. However, some people may only have one or two doctors to choose from in a rural area, or need the services of a particular physician who is a provider on their health plan. To expect someone to throw their medical care to the winds to advance a pro-gun agenda by alienating their physician is asking a bit much.

A physician or a nurse is not supposed to let a confrontational patient affect their decision making, but the fact is, it often does. Refusing to answer this question allows the assessment to remain therapeutic. Neither an anti-gun or a pro-gun agenda has any place in a doctor's office or a medical assessment. It is imperative that a physician/patient relationship remain cordial. If the physician does not have enough integrity to keep the politics out of a patient/physician relationship, then the patient should remove the politics for their own benefit. Lets face it, some doctors are better than others, some surgeons have higher infection and mortality rates, and some are better diagnosticians. If I need medical care, I want the best doctor for the job that I can get, and I really don't care if he is pro-gun or not. I care whether I live, die, or become maimed for life. I'll worry about guns later.

I think it is safe to say that a pro-gun physician would not ask this question, and an anti-gun physician would definitely be alienated after you gave them an earful and threatened them professionally. You can always file a complaint AFTER you have recieved the care you need. I am not saying do nothing, just get the care you deserve first........... Think tactically.

Russ
November 24, 2003, 06:12 PM
George has it. Best to lie through your teeth lest it be documented for posterity in your medical files.

Sylvilagus Aquaticus
November 24, 2003, 06:24 PM
Before I went back to diagnosing and riding herd on computers I worked in a neurooncology practice (brain cancer mostly). Our social worker affiliate ran afoul of the physicians once it was leared they were asking questions along this line. As a nurse I did probe (discreetly) into the patient's mental state as well as that of their family, but none of my patients was ever a risk for suicide or violence. There is a move afoot in the professional nursing schools as well as the medical community (read AMA) toward Social Activism, and that tends to disturb me...especially when it equates to nannyism.

You never know when you're going to end up as part of a study or focus group, I've found.

My current physician is mostly responsible for getting me interested in Mosin-Nagants more than anything. I tend to do my own diagnoses and tell him what I need. If I didn't, he'd be too busy talking about antique Russki rifles for me to get a good assessment done.

Regards,
Rabbit.

4v50 Gary
November 24, 2003, 06:33 PM
I was never asked that by any doctor. If they did, I'm going to ask that they forego any lesson on firearm safety and stick with the medical issues like, why is my tongue blue and what are these green spots here and why do I see worms in my eyeballs and how come I wake up at night when it's only 9 a.m. in the morning?

justice4all
November 24, 2003, 06:44 PM
I was asked about gun ownership at a routine physical a few years ago. My exact words were, "That's not anything you need to worry about." I was polite but firm, and the doctor moved on to medically relevant inquiries.

HABU
November 24, 2003, 07:47 PM
I have never been asked this by a doctor. I asked my wife if she has, she answered no. I told her that if she ever was asked, she needed to say no. Says she: Why. They are locked up.:rolleyes: I then explained to her that their agenda wasn't medical, but political, and read her a couple of paragraphes from the above article.

They are tightening the circle.:cuss: :banghead:

Alan Fud
November 24, 2003, 07:51 PM
... i told her if any one asks to tell them its city water. (there's some sort of a silly regulation about kids drinking well water) ... Can't get city water out here even if we wanted it. Wonder what they would do about that? Force us to move or force the goverment to supply city water?

Girlwithagun
November 24, 2003, 07:57 PM
That question caught me off-guard at my son's last physical. I answered "yes" to having them in the house (truthful) and "yes" to them being locked away and unloaded (not so much).
It bothered me later that I didn't question why the information was needed and what would be done if I had answered honestly.
Seems like questionaires by hospitals etc. are becoming more and more invasive. It's like they are looking for reasons to take our kids/guns/rights away.
Guess I have to get used to saying "None of your buisness!" :neener:

Shalako
November 24, 2003, 08:14 PM
Question: Why doesn't the AMA want us to have guns?

Maybe the doctors (AMA) would rather work on us good guys (victims) than on the badguys? :confused:

rangerbill
November 24, 2003, 08:22 PM
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
... i told her if any one asks to tell them its city water. (there's some sort of a silly regulation about kids drinking well water) ...
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Can't get city water out here even if we wanted it. Wonder what they would do about that? Force us to move or force the goverment to supply city water?


__________________

we knew from other people that had been down that road that if caught, they would see to it that you purchased water in jugs from the store.(which i wonder about the quality of). theres nothing wrong with the water in this area either. we all grew up drinking it.

StuporDave
November 24, 2003, 08:30 PM
Maybe the doctors (AMA) would rather work on us good guys (victims) than on the badguys?
You could be on to something there....
"Us good guys" generally have money/insurance while "the bad guys" generally don't.

Dave

RugerGuy
November 24, 2003, 08:34 PM
I JUST got home from my new doctors office a few minutes ago. I had the " Do you own guns" question in my question list myself. I thought it was odd and without thinking I answered yes. I was caught off guard. I did'nt want to kill the messenger because my doctor works in a large medical building and I'm sure all the other doctors patients are asked the same questions by whoever runs the practice. I'm from Maine and not used to the anti-gun feelings in Taxassachusetts yet . Up in Maine they don't ask if you've got guns: they ask how many?? I wish I'd read these post before I went tonight. I would've been prepared and made a stink . Live and Learn!!!

XLMiguel
November 24, 2003, 08:50 PM
The only gun question my Dr. asks is, "What are you carrying today?" He was quite taken by my H&K USP45C ( he mostly plinks with an old .22). The nurse-practioner is into sporting clays (and apparently pretty good at it). This in in McLean (Fairfax Co.) VA, no less :D

Lone_Gunman
November 24, 2003, 08:52 PM
Well, I am a physician also, and have never asked that question either. Its none of my business.

The AMA and several other organized medical organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, are run by liberals. I resigned from the AMA after their newly elected President chose to make gun control an issue in his inaugural speech.

As for the "boundary violation" I have never heard that term prior to this thread, and its not going to cut much ice with any physician you use it on. The state medical board will not pursue this issue if you bring it up with them; you will never be able to convince them it is a boundary violation because this question has been legitimized by the AMA and is being pushed as a standard of care.

If I was asked that by a doctor, I am not sure how I would respond at the time. I think I would probably say I don't own one.

The AMA really sucks, by the way, as an organization. It is supposed to look out for the interests of physicians and patients, but ends up playing busy body in issues like this.

tripleevil
November 24, 2003, 10:25 PM
Whoa! It seems that there's some serious animosity towards doctors around here and some serious paranoia. Is seems that everyone thinks there are some sinister motives.

I usually just lurk around here but I figure I'd weigh in and go out on a limb - being a newly minted MD...

Do I ask my patients if they have guns?
Yes - but it's not a question in isolation - it's part of normal health screening. It's followed with questions about gun safety i.e. safely stored, lead exposure etc.

What's wrong with making sure that a fellow gun owner (or possesor) is taking it seriously and safely? Is it something that should be presumed?

I find it surprising on this board that so many people are against any PCP EVEN asking this question. Over and over again, the four rules are chanted. Fools at the range are not tolerated here and schooled frequently.

Follow this analogy if you will - I ask my patients if they wear their seat belts while driving. It may be none of my business but when they crash and I have to take care of their broken femur and try to coordinate their rehab, it becomes my business. Health care is not just about getting people healthy - it's also equally about keeping people healthy.

The patients I treat are probably much more high risk than any of you. I took a phone call from an freaking out mom last month (from the gun club) about her kid who shot a BB into his thumb after finding a gun and pulled the trigger trying to put it back on top of the fridge. Imagine if he found his gang-banger brother's 9mm.

Is it politically motivated? No. Do I do it to take away your evil AK-47's? No. Do I want to ferret out gun owners? No. Do I care if you own a gun or not? No.

Do I want to take care of your kid's colostomy after he finds your loaded .22 and shoots himself in the gut? Absolutely not.

If you don't want to answer the question - don't. Most MD's would be happy to chart one less thing.

Better yet - ask your doctor why (s)he's asking and use the opportunity to dispell some myths.


Evil

anapex
November 24, 2003, 11:21 PM
Follow this analogy if you will - I ask my patients if they wear their seat belts while driving. It may be none of my business but when they crash and I have to take care of their broken femur and try to coordinate their rehab, it becomes my business.

Just wondering why you should really care how they did it when your only supposed to fix the results. I mean if they have a broken bone who cares how they did it, it's still the same way to fix a broken arm if I was wearing a seatbelt as if I wasn't right?

Doctors are one of the main things I notice becoming incredibly invasive in our current society. I'm currently being treated for some mild depression so I've gotten the whole range of "lets look for a way to lock you up and take your kids away" questions. So I try to tread very lightly as to how I answer. I want to keep the little buggers I have afterall.

matis
November 24, 2003, 11:33 PM
* Your race is directly related to your risk for certain diseases and conditions.
________________________________________________________

Yes, Mpayne, but the doc agrees with me that that is NOT why they ask.

They ask for political purposes and for reasons relating to the racial spoils system.




matis

mountainclmbr
November 25, 2003, 12:29 AM
I would just reply:

1. Have you ever perscribed narcotics?

2. Do you know where they went?

3. Do you know if any of your "medicated " patients has harmed anyone?

4. Do you feel responsible, or would anyone else feel you were?

5. How do I exploit this to minimize your rights?

6. What professional organizations do you belong to that can be sued?...AMA???

7. Please list your address and verify that you have no means of self defense.....:neener: :neener: :neener: :neener: :neener:

JohnKSa
November 25, 2003, 12:48 AM
Ok, a couple of docs have responded as if it should be perfectly normal for them to ask about guns.

I suppose it is...

Here are the times when it is relevant to ask a patient about guns:

If you suspect lead poisoning.

If a patient complains of hearing loss.

If a patient seems to be suffering from gunshot.

If a patient seems to be afflicted by some ailment which could result from repeated firearm recoil.

In short, when the ailment or condition of the patient leads you to suspect that guns are a factor in the ailment or condition it is perfectly relevant for you to ask about guns.

How a patient stores his gun has nothing to do with the PRACTICE OF MEDICINE and is therefore NOT YOUR BUSINESS as a doctor.

If you think it is your business to see that all of your patients store their guns safely then by the same token you should ask about pool enclosures, safety seats, seat belts, air bags, driving habits, dead bolts, security systems, presence of 5 gallon buckets when toddlers are in the home, storage of kitchen knives, electrical outlet safety, aluminum wiring, radon gas, fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, storage of household chemicals, life insurance, etc.

Making me and my family SAFER is not your job--that is MY job. Your opinion of what makes me safer is IRRELEVANT to your profession and therefore should not be broached during a medical interview under the pretense that it pertains to your profession.

Your job is maintaining my HEALTH--that is what I PAY you to do. So that I can kill myself skydiving if I so choose.

If you feel that it is critical that you discuss gun safety with people then I recommend that you become a firearms instructor and hold classes.

I, by the way, am a certified firearms instructor. I became one because I think it is important that people learn firearm safety. I am concerned for the well-being of my students. Do you think it would be right, in the interest of improving my student's well-being, for me to ask about their medical history? Or to offer them medical advice?

If you are really concerned about your patients' safety with regard to firearms, I suggest you ask a local firearm safety instructor for some brochures and hand them out to your patients.

Darrin
November 25, 2003, 01:17 AM
JohnKSa,

Excellent post! You have just become my personal hero for I could not have worded it better.

Fortunately, I live in an area and have the insurance to change docs should the need arise. *hint*

c_yeager
November 25, 2003, 06:21 AM
Yes - but it's not a question in isolation - it's part of normal health screening. It's followed with questions about gun safety i.e. safely stored, lead exposure etc.

Um, i have a funny fealing that our definition of "safely stored" is VERY different. At least one of my pistols is "safely stored" with a loaded chamber in my VERY DELIBERATLY unlocked nightstand. One can be typically found "safely stored" with a loaded chamber in my waistbant at times. In fact on occasion there will even be a pistol "safely stored" under the drivers seat of my car (not left there unnatended though). So as a MEDICAL PROFFESION what exactly is the MEDICAL problem that i am likely to encounter from my take on "safe storage"?

XavierBreath
November 25, 2003, 06:27 AM
Triple Evil,
Since as a physician you are asking this question under the guises of helping your patients, I must assume that if they answer yes, you then proceed to educate them. Can you state your credentials for firearms instruction? Where did you become a Firearms Safety Instructor, and how many course hours do you possess? How much time of your evaluation do you devote to firearms safety instruction with the patient who says "Yes, I own firearms?" Do you just check a box and ask if they are locked up? Do you consider that safety instruction?

I have to assume that you are NOT devoting any time at all to firearms safety instruction (if I am wrong, please correct me and state the time you devote, and your credentials to teach this material. A morning seminar given by the AMA or the Brady Bunch will not suffice here). If you do not offer the instruction, you have NO right to ask the question. Also, frankly, it is none of your business whether a patient wears a seatbelt, a motorcycle helmet, or stands in a bucket of water while doing electrical work either. It is none of your business whether a patient owns pitbulls, marries outside of their race, or chooses not to recieve blood. It is none of your business whether I am a Democrat or a Republican. It is none of your business whether I own my home or have a pool. It is none of your business if I am a Marine either. Do you advise your patients not to join the Marines because they are 80 times more likely to be shot as a Marine than as a civilian? If not, then why do you feel the compulsion to advise them on guns in the home? Doctor, it is none of your business to do anything but practice medicine. Medicine is your business. Being a pawn to those who seek to remove a person's rights to self determination, no matter what that person should choose to do is NOT your business. You are unwittingly participating in the destruction of the general public's view of the medical profession as a whole. Your patients are NOT stupid.

How about teaching your patients how to take their medications properly and what the side effects are instead? How about teaching your patients what the components of the diet you impose on them are? How about asking a patient if they can READ before you give them 50 pages of gobblety gook to take home to read alone just so you can get out of the examination room in under ten minutes? If you truly want to impact your patient's state of health, then focus on teaching them about what you know........medicine. Leave guns to people who have been trained and credentialed to teach firearm safety. To allow your postion as the white coated professional to be abused in this manner is to ignore it's significance and diminish it's ability to impact the care that you have chosen to devote your life to. If you really believe that any gun owner will change their behavior because you ask them whether they own guns and whether they are locked up, you are deluding yourself. Nobody is against doctors practicing medicine. There are plenty of people who want their physician to stay out of politics, religion, and social issues though.

Lone Gunman, Thank you for your honesty.

XavierBreath
November 25, 2003, 06:35 AM
"Follow this analogy if you will - I ask my patients if they wear their seat belts while driving. It may be none of my business but when they crash and I have to take care of their broken femur and try to coordinate their rehab, it becomes my business. "

Now follow this analogy. If I hire someone to paint my house, it is not his business of what color it is, but what color I want it to be. If I hire a man to cut my grass, it is not his business what kind of grass I have, but how short I want it.

Possessing a gun is no more a health issue than possessing a hammer. I would prefer a physician ask me how many drug addicts I sleep with on a regular basis. At least THAT has something to do with my health!

Border
November 25, 2003, 06:45 AM
Some Drs. like to infantilize their patients in any of a number of ways. (He's 20 years younger than you are and he introduces himself as Dr. _____while calling you by your first name)! Makes them feel even more important. In China they have the status of a school teacher but here they are like high priests in some quarters.

Asking about seatbelts etc. is part of that infantilization I believe: I'm an adult and you can't think for yourselves! Anyhoo, mine happens to be very down to earth but should I ever be asked that guns question I would lecture him for asking it but answer it falsely if only to throw off any statistics the AMA might be keeping!

Khornet
November 25, 2003, 08:14 AM
IF YOU HAVE GUNS AT HOME

It's none of our business.
Please be sure to store and handle them safely, and if you are unsure how to do it, seek the advice of a qualified firearms instructor.

-----------------------------------

I've been on both sides of this. My kids' pediatrician is a real Leftist, and has the question on his standard intake form. My kids have been instructed to refuse to answer and tell him he will hear from me. I'm 20 steps away from his door. He knows better now. Nice enough guy, good doc too, just miseducated. My local gunshop owner had the same question put to his kids by the same guy, and closed shop, drove up to the office, and let him have what for in no uncertain terms. Bravo Zulu.

OTOH, I do ask about guns when indicated: severe depression always gets a question about suicidal thoughts, and if answered yes, how would you do it. If the plan is plausible, and a gun is involved, I have in fact contacted the spouse and had her remove the guns. I didn't have to like it, but my duty was to the patient and family. I'd do it again.

Patients with certain symptoms/lab results get asked if they are shooters, and especially do they cast/handload, wear hearing protection, etc. All in the interest of keeping shooting safe and fun.

Patients who, when they remove their jackets, reveal an empty holster, are quietly told that they need not be disarmed in my office.

I put the sign up because all the surrounding offices, if they have anything gun-related posted at all, are uniformly anti, such as the one with a hand holding a .38 Spl round and the words "Every 12 minutes a child in America dies from one of these." GRRRR....

Balog
November 25, 2003, 09:36 AM
such as the one with a hand holding a .38 Spl round and the words "Every 12 minutes a child in America dies from one of these

Wow, kids are dying from cartridges? I thought they had to be fired out of a gun first. Shows what I know.

clubsoda22
November 25, 2003, 10:28 AM
I got asked that by my former doctor.

I told him it was none of his business and that his malpractice insurance doesn't cover him for gun advice as it is out of the scope of his practice.

goober
November 25, 2003, 12:55 PM
Well, there have certainly been some ignorant comments made, but there is no sense in singling them out. There have also been good points made. I believe there is no need for this type of question as a general screening question unless there is some direct evidence for the need to ask. I believe most physicians would agree with this.

As for some of the posters, unless you have been in the medical field or seen patients you really have no idea what goes on and the kind of people you meet and situations you face. People expect you to be perfect in everything you do, and by god you should be to the best of your ability. I would wager that most doc's who ask about guns have never thought about the political implications of the question, and may just need to be educated. We can work on that. The doctor-patient relationship has changed to the point that I consider people partners in their healthcare, I inform them, and they make the decisions. No politics, no bull????.

Sorry this has gotten off-topic, it just frustrates me to read so many disparaging comments, and I want people to realize that there are some (not many) physicians who are very supportive of the second amendment, and there are many physicians (and regular people) who are ignorant about gun-related issues. It reminds me of when I go to get my car repaired (non-german BTW) and here people talking about their prostrates... :)

Greg

Guntalk
November 25, 2003, 01:12 PM
>>It reminds me of when I go to get my car repaired (non-german BTW) and here people talking about their prostrates... <<

If a car won't run, does that mean it is prostrate? <grin>

Nightfall
November 25, 2003, 01:52 PM
...such as the one with a hand holding a .38 Spl round and the words "Every 12 minutes a child in America dies from one of these."
43,800 children in America die a year from being shot? :scrutiny:

I know the leftist-antis have to lie a lot... but come on! :rolleyes:

ny32182
November 25, 2003, 01:54 PM
such as the one with a hand holding a .38 Spl round and the words "Every 12 minutes a child in America dies from one of these."


More to the point, this is total crap anyway... that would be 43,800 "children in America" every year. There are just over 30,000 deaths by firearm every year in the US for all ages combined, both justified and not justified.

clubsoda22
November 25, 2003, 01:58 PM
goober, i'm an EMT working on a nursing degree and the only time i've ever asked a patient if he had a gun was if there was a bullet in him and i was concerned about getting a bullet in me.

Unless there is a bullet in me, it's not my doctors place to ask.

Jayman
November 25, 2003, 02:15 PM
I guess I must be fortunate, my doc doesn't seem to care much about 'em either. Last physical he just told me to set my gun up on the counter while he looked me over. I'm glad this thread hasn't turned 100% physician bashing...

Khornet
November 25, 2003, 02:39 PM
I meant "every day, 12 children die.."

Still a lie.

And if you bust into my office, you'll be looking down the wrong end of Mr. G22.

goober
November 25, 2003, 02:50 PM
Aye club, wouldn't you consider that direct evidence for the need to ask?

Greg

edit: I guess I am not sure what you meant to say. I agree with your final statement, I just don't want to be misinterpreted that I didn't. I only said that the question should be asked if there was a need based oin direct evidence (i.e. gunshot wound, etc.)

XavierBreath
November 25, 2003, 03:04 PM
Hear hear Greg, Prostate.

I am very supportive of physicians practicing medicine appropriately, but when they try to legislate my 2nd ammendment rights, I think they need to be reigned in. Rather than seeing firearms as a health care issue, I think physicians should look towards how insurance companies influence medical decision making, and as a result the quality of a patient's life or death. That is a health care issue that has been ignored for to long.

Brad Johnson
November 25, 2003, 03:15 PM
I've used the attached questionnaire on two occasions when I was asked if I owned any guns. Once was with the physician's assistant, the other was with the doctor himself. On both occasions I politely handed them the form and said that I would be glad to respond to the question when they had completely filled out the form. Both occasions drew a blank stare and a mumbled "Oh, it's not that important".

UPDATED FORM TWO POSTS BELOW - I corrected a typo I saw.

Brad

cidirkona
November 25, 2003, 04:07 PM
I'm printing that the next time I got to the doctor's office...
-Colin

Brad Johnson
November 25, 2003, 05:20 PM
Corrected a typo that I saw.

Brad

JMag
November 25, 2003, 10:29 PM
She's probably a card-carrying member of the AMA and the ACLU. I'd tell her you have steak knives and ice picks at home too, and they are not locked up. Then I'd tell her I don't pay her to be a gun nanny.

JohnKSa
November 25, 2003, 11:02 PM
Sign in Dr. Khornet's office:
IF YOU HAVE GUNS AT HOME

It's none of our business.
Please be sure to store and handle them safely, and if you are unsure how to do it, seek the advice of a qualified firearms instructor.
Common sense is sweet--in part due to it's rarity.

I wish you were in my area--you'd get my business.

The rest of you post is excellent as well, and it is easy to see that you are on target with your determination of when the topic is/is not relevant.

clubsoda22
November 26, 2003, 12:33 AM
I was agreeing with you, greg.

squibload
January 2, 2004, 12:25 PM
"Yes, Doctor, I do....and I think it's spreading. My family is showing signs of potential gun ownership and I believe that we're contagious."

bvmjethead
January 2, 2004, 12:45 PM
Guns?

What are guns?

BogBabe
January 2, 2004, 12:55 PM
I can imagine upcoming doctor's office conversations:

Doc: "Do you keep a gun in the house?"

Patient: "Do you know what a boundary violation is?"

Doc: "..." (checks "yes" in little box on clipboard)

LynnMassGuy
January 2, 2004, 01:14 PM
I would switch doctors immediatly and I would let her know why after i did. I would also inform her that since she decided to push her political agenda on me that I would in turn make sure none of my friends and aquaintances were her patients. There needs to be repercussions for people who need to stick there noses into things they obviously don't fully understand.

harpethriver
January 2, 2004, 01:19 PM
The media coined the term "gun violence" to go along with "assault weapons", our educational system joined them in brainwashing students(lemmings), along with their parents(sheeple), and our spineless Prez(W-whom I voted for and probably will again) allows the CDC to assist in continuing the charade. Pediatricians pick up on the opportunity to do something "for the children", because, if it "just saves one life", and on it goes, ad nauseum, further proving the antis want to teach what to think but not how to think. When the facts aren't on your side confuse the uninformed by playing the "children" card, back it up with our revered medical system, and voila, the noble end result justifies the means necessary to achieve it.

pax
January 2, 2004, 01:21 PM
When my doctor asked me about guns during an office visit awhile back, it turned out he was looking for some advice. He and his wife had just decided to get their CPLs and were looking for someone who'd been shooting awhile to talk them through the process of purchasing self defense weapons.

Course, it came up at all in a medical context, as I've been asthmatically reacting to gunsmoke and needed an up in my meds. He asked if I had any idea what had been triggering the increased difficulty, so (with some reservations) I told him.

Glad I wasn't surly about it. He's a nice guy and is turning into a friend.

pax

CAPTAIN MIKE
January 2, 2004, 02:14 PM
Gee Doc, what kind of home protection tools do YOU have in YOUR home?

WAGCEVP
January 2, 2004, 02:32 PM
> a. The number of physicians in the United States is 700,000.
> b. Accidental deaths caused by physicians per year is 120,000.
> c. Accidental deaths per physician is 0.171.. (US Dept. of Health & Human
> Services)
>
> Then think about this:
>
> a. The number of gun owners in the US is 80,000,000 (yes, eighty-million!)
> b. The number of accidental gun deaths per year (all age groups) is 1,500.
> c. The number of accidental deaths per gun owner is .0000188.
>
> Statistically, doctors are about 9,000 times more dangerous than gun
owners.
>
> FACT: NOT EVERYONE HAS A GUN, BUT ALMOST EVERYONE HAS A DOCTOR.

goober
January 2, 2004, 03:05 PM
I won't even begin to try and analyze the previous post, because I find it sort of funny :). Anything that helps the cause is OK with me, I don't take things personally. Simple things like this at least bring out a discussion regarding our right to own firearms, rather then letting Washington stonewall us with new regulations...

However, in response to the above post I think Mark Twain said it best:

There are three types of lies. Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics.

:)

Greg

cratz2
January 2, 2004, 03:08 PM
The last time I went to the family general practicioner AND the last time I went to the eye doctor, they asked me the same question.

Skunkabilly
January 2, 2004, 03:15 PM
At the optometrist, I brought up guns because I have to look out the corner of my glasses when shooting with a really locked up Weaver stance and when shooting rifle. The optometrist was curious why I was so picky about the optical quality of glasses out of the periphery.

Turns out he hunts (has a Browning BAR) and his partner co-owns a local gunstore :cool:

Watch-Six
January 2, 2004, 04:50 PM
My doctor is even more pro gun than I am. (If that's possible). A few years ago he "prescribed" that I read "Unintended Consequences" and get every one that I know to do the same. You got to love this guy. Watch-Six

Amish_Bill
January 2, 2004, 07:54 PM
How about a totally polite, non-confrontational and potentially educational answer?

Doc-- AB, do you own any guns?
AB---- You're a gun professional too Doc?
Doc-- well, no...
AB---- In that case, would you want some lessons?

OK... so it might not work all the time... but it's a way to sidestep the questions and maintain a "helpful and friendly" conversational tone while probing deeper.

Hillman
January 2, 2004, 08:46 PM
They can ask me all they want about the guns (or lack thereof :neener: ), but when they try to slide the questions past my kids is where I get upset.

I was there once when the doc asked my 8 year old the 'gun' question.

Q: Are there guns in your house?
A: Yes.

Q: Are they locked up?
A: Yes.

Q: You don't touch them do you?
<and then he made me proud>
A: Only when Dad takes me shooting.

The doc looked at me kind of shocked. To which I said, "Tell her the 4 rules". Without missing a beat, he recited the 4 rules, and told her what each one meant.

To which she said, "looks like you're training him right".

7.62FullMetalJacket
January 2, 2004, 11:04 PM
Please Note: We are on a perpetual slide toward socialized medicine (tin hat on). The HMOs are prepping the field with these one-size-fits-all/agenda-driven questionnaires. The AMA has been riding this horse for a while now.

Previous posters are wise to be very wary of exactly what is in that medical record. It will follow you around. Any psych eval will revolve around this info. Future health care/insurance may be affected by how you answer now. You see how insurance rates for smokers are always higher? How about a "gun" rider on that policy? You care will be affected when you can no longer afford insurance.

It is a shame that you must lie in order to protect yourself from harrassment and future issues. I was not raised that way. "None of your business" is a fair compromise.

What happens when Hillary enacts Universal Health Care and your Doc and all medical personnel are working for the Gov. And your medical records are now part of the Imperial Federal Government bureaucracy?

A Doc is a human mechanic. We break it, they fix it. They also diagnose and prevent medical conditions. Owning a gun is not a medical condition. Neither is storing, wearing, or shooting. Like it has been said before, gun safety is MY responsibility. Asking me is a hoot, asking my kids is going to get you in trouble.

As far as the Doc feeling it is his duty to ask for my benefit, then he is only showing his lack of experience. Doc, you have been programmed to be a busy body. No offense. Just re-evaluate your position.

Remember, you are a human mechanic.

Travis McGee
January 3, 2004, 12:00 AM
Reply: "Do you have a vibrator in your purse?"

"None of your business!"

"Neither are my guns."

RR
January 3, 2004, 01:52 AM
tripleevil posted that as a "new" MD, he asks his patients if they wear a seatbelt, asks them if they own guns.

Why? He is concerned for their safety.

He then refers to "charting" the responses!

Those charts are not "private." They are accessed by your health insurance carrier and your homeowners insurance carrier. If you are involved in any type of lawsuit, including one resulting from an auto accident and even a divorce, they are read by guardian ad litems, claims agents, adjusters, secretaries, lawyers, judges, paralegals, clerks in the courthouse, RN's, LPNs, CNAs, receptionists, police officers, psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers.

I have witnessed the use of medical records documenting a postive response to firearms ownership, seat belt use, smoking, how much you drink...all used against the "patient" in the legal system.

tripleevil may not have an "agenda" in mind when he asks his questions, but those who will read his charting do. What is sad is that I fear his attitude is shared by many of his generation. What is even more sad is that tripleevil is clueless as to the ramifications of what he puts in his "charts."

cedarsavage
January 3, 2004, 02:06 PM
I fill out a "means questionaire" yearly for VA. The other side of the form is an application for care/treatment (IIRC). One of the questions asks what is your religion.

Probably a trick question. If you are dumb enough to answer you would probably allow yourself to be included in a "study group".

taa, cs:D

NorthernExtreme
January 3, 2004, 02:27 PM
I was asked once, I immediatly asked him if he had quit beating his wife?

You should have seen his face. First he started to say yes, then tried to say no, then he looked at me and asked, [Why I would even ask such a question]. My response was, " Funny, because I was just wondering the same thing about what you asked me."

He didn't ask any more questions.

Billmanweh
January 3, 2004, 03:01 PM
I have a doctor's appointment on Thursday, I think I'm going to ask her what's up with this question.

Just seems like a really odd thing for your doctor to ask.

RSKING45
January 3, 2004, 07:19 PM
I would have asked her a question or two that more that likely gotton my butt kicked right out the door.
Here a good one,my wife went on a job interview a while back,she was asked if was married,how many kids if any,we have 4 and the next question she was asked "are they all from the same father" I was suprised that my wife didnt repeatedly slap the face of the bitch that said that. Can you guess where her interview was??????? A hosptial shes a nurse
How ya like that one
Rich

TheOtherOne
January 3, 2004, 07:47 PM
Your response to the question should have been:

"I have 53 guns, I keep them all loaded at all times, they all have names and I tuck each of them into bed with me every night."


:D

aerod1
January 3, 2004, 09:00 PM
Well my doc is a hunter and he also has guns in the house. We talk hunting and shooting regularly as well as health issues.
He has never asked that question because he already knows the answer.

Jim Hall

RSKING45
January 3, 2004, 10:49 PM
I am not sure about are family DR never really had a conversation with him about guns,but I did have one with our eye DR. Getting alittle off the DR subject, our judge who approves our pistol permits and also signs the paper work we need to purchase a new handgun is really into shooting sports.I seen him at the range a couple af weeks ago and he hade a nice collection of rifles with him.:p

Hillman
January 4, 2004, 08:52 AM
He has never asked that question because he already knows the answer.


... and has probably already indicated so on the form

A lot of comments have been made about hunting with your doctor.

Keep in mind a lot (that's about as scientific as I can get) of hunters do not understand 2A concepts. As long as government regs do not affect hunting, they could care less.

Blackcloud6
January 4, 2004, 09:12 AM
As long as I know that I am not stepping outside the bounds I need to practice medicine, you can say anything you want to.

And so can I!

Round Gun Shooter
January 4, 2004, 09:55 AM
I went to my Auto repairman yesterday. While asking me the problem with my car he asked if I used and owned firearms. It is needed information to properly repair my door locks :rolleyes:

When I left him, I went to the brake shop. They asked if I used used or owned firearms. They could adjust the breaks so they would not slide off the seat :rolleyes:

I then went to the car wash. They asked the same question as they could make sure there were no trunk leaks that would make my guns get wet:rolleyes:

Then I took my dog to the Vet, Vet asked if I had guns in the house and if they were locked up so the Corgi couldn't hurt herself. The Corgi just looked at the Vet and said "Huh???"
http://www.fototime.com/E34D1322F4603B3/standard.jpg


Last stop was the restaurant They asked too as they could supply a larger napkin to cover my thunderwear:what:

In all cases it would be the same answer I would give a prying doctor. Do your job and let me worry about what I own or do not own. All questions on a doctors form unrelated to my immediate problem are left blank.

Doctors are wonderful when you need them but they are no where near as important as they think they are.

Regards,

riverdog
January 4, 2004, 11:11 AM
Whoa! It seems that there's some serious animosity towards doctors around here and some serious paranoia. Is seems that everyone thinks there are some sinister motives.

I usually just lurk around here but I figure I'd weigh in and go out on a limb - being a newly minted MD...

Do I ask my patients if they have guns?
Yes - but it's not a question in isolation - it's part of normal health screening. It's followed with questions about gun safety i.e. safely stored, lead exposure etc.

What's wrong with making sure that a fellow gun owner (or possesor) is taking it seriously and safely? Is it something that should be presumed?

I find it surprising on this board that so many people are against any PCP EVEN asking this question. Over and over again, the four rules are chanted. Fools at the range are not tolerated here and schooled frequently.

Follow this analogy if you will - I ask my patients if they wear their seat belts while driving. It may be none of my business but when they crash and I have to take care of their broken femur and try to coordinate their rehab, it becomes my business. Health care is not just about getting people healthy - it's also equally about keeping people healthy.

The patients I treat are probably much more high risk than any of you. I took a phone call from an freaking out mom last month (from the gun club) about her kid who shot a BB into his thumb after finding a gun and pulled the trigger trying to put it back on top of the fridge. Imagine if he found his gang-banger brother's 9mm.

Is it politically motivated? No. Do I do it to take away your evil AK-47's? No. Do I want to ferret out gun owners? No. Do I care if you own a gun or not? No.

Do I want to take care of your kid's colostomy after he finds your loaded .22 and shoots himself in the gut? Absolutely not.

If you don't want to answer the question - don't. Most MD's would be happy to chart one less thing.

Better yet - ask your doctor why (s)he's asking and use the opportunity to dispell some myths.


Evil I have no animosity toward doctors, if I did I'd never see one again. However, the discussion of Boundary Violations (http://www.tysknews.com/Depts/2nd_Amend/boundary_violation.htm) on page one of this thread, and the political motivations of the AMA, AAP and ACP should give any pro-gun doctor pause as to what they are actually asking and "charting". I find "charting" particularly troubling if it is for any use outside the doctor's office. If the information is available to insurance companies or others outside the doctor's office, it isn't being treated as privilieged and where does that leave the doctor-patient relationship? Boundary Violation -- great term.

IMO these questions are out of line. It is none of your business if I wear my seat-belts or own guns. My drinking habits may be your business because it has a direct medical effect, I'll have to think abut that. But other indirect medical issues such as swimming pool ownership, speeding, seat belt use and whether or not I own a gun are NOYB. Firearms ownership is a political issue and the AMA et al are involved and have a political agenda not necessarily in the best interest of the nation's patients. If a doctor is a member of the AMA ... Boundary Violation.

Why not simply have brochure type information available in your lobby about the health risks asociated with shooting (eg., lead exposure, the Four Rules) and avoid violating any boundaries. Get some Eddie Eagle material and put that in your lobby for light reading while your patient's wait. Firearm ownership and storage is a personal decision, not for you or any other doctor to question, judge or "chart"...

Good thread.

Gordy Wesen
January 4, 2004, 10:38 PM
pretty smart observations..."I don't believe they have a right to know, so I have no obligation to answer truthfully.
Bob" and AJ with the BV. Great.

Farmed Ship
January 5, 2004, 12:04 AM
OK, some doctors are too ignorant to know what "boundary
violation" is.
But there is no sure way to expose the phonies than
talk about the pocket book.
==============
--Shaman: Do you have guns in your house?
--Patient: My consulting fees are $10/minute, in
10-minutes increments minimum. Your clock
has just started ticking. If you wish to continue,
proceed with your questions right ahead.
================
How many of the quacks would be willing
to pay real money for their feel-good political
leanings?

FTG-05
January 5, 2004, 05:18 PM
"When did doctors start butting their noses into guns in the house?"


Since idiots started answering the questions with yes!

Amish_Bill
January 5, 2004, 07:42 PM
.... take off your jacket or over-shirt to reveal an empty holster and say "No. Why do you ask?"

Car Knocker
January 5, 2004, 10:01 PM
Why an EMPTY holster?

Amish_Bill
January 5, 2004, 10:29 PM
Empty... thinking of hospital-type doctors where carry is frowned upon...
(flashing back to last time I saw a doc... pain so bad I was shivering - decided I was too incapacitated to carry)

Car Knocker
January 5, 2004, 10:38 PM
Well, I guess I really don't care whether a doctor frowns on my carrying or not, whether the doctor is in a hospital or a private office. It ain't none of his business. Fortunately, in Utah there aren't any laws regulating whether one can carry in a hospital or not, the sole exception being the secure area of a state hospital.

Amish_Bill
January 5, 2004, 10:53 PM
...also a bit of the one post where the guy's Doc looked at his empty holster and told him he didn't have to disarm...

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