Physician-Patient Relationship Is Obsolete
Well, of course I'm not serious about the title! I'm merely pointing out the obvious lunacy associated with a recent court decision that Florida physicians are not permitted to imquire (merely ASK?!!!) about firearms or discuss firearm safety with their patients.
How unbelievably intrusive must your physician be (sarcasm alert) to want to inquire into whether you have guns, like guns, want to shoot guns, and whether you might possibly keep them safely locked up when not in use!
We physicians understand the importance of privacy. With HIPAA rules, and associated large fines, ever hanging over our heads, no physician wishes to knowingly violate the sanctity of the physician-patient relationship.
In that same vein, don't you think it is reasonable for a physician to want to discuss aspects of a person's life that may affect their health? seems acceptable to me, but I'm sure I may hear equal and opposite reactions to such a query.
Here are some excerpts of the reports of the AMA reaction (from the daily AMA email):
AMA critical of ruling upholding Florida law restricting physicians from discussing gun risks with patients.
Politico (7/30, Villacorta) reported in a brief piece in “Politico Pulse” that the AMA is not “pleased” with a recent “court ruling upholding a...Florida law that restricts” physicians from discussing the risks of firearms with patients. AMA President Robert Wah said, “This law poses real harm to patients as it interferes with physicians’ ability to deliver safe care, and hinders patients’ access to the most relevant information available.”
MedPage Today (7/30, Wallan) reported, “The American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the” AMA “all issued statements condemning the legislation and the...ruling.”
In the New York Times (7/30, Subscription Publication) “The Upshot” blog, Aaron E. Carroll, a professor of pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine, wrote that physicians “who ask about guns aren’t doing so because they’re nosy.” Carroll writes, “If the courts decide that people have the right never to be asked sensitive questions, they’re interfering with the relationship between” physician “and patient,” and “they’re deciding that some health risks are worth minimizing and others are not.”