AMA calls for stronger firearm background checks
At this week’s AMA Interim Meeting, delegates urged states to impose more robust reporting of relevant information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
“For National Instant Criminal Background Check System to be a useful tool in the prevention of firearm injuries and deaths, it needs to contain the records of individuals disqualified under law from possessing firearms — and the data needs to be reported in a timely manner,” Barbara L. McAneny, MD, president of AMA, said in a press release. “Inconsistencies in state reporting [have] contributed to the lack of success in identifying individuals who should not have a firearm.”
To enhance the quality and timeliness of National Instant Criminal Background Check System reporting, the AMA encourages federal grants to states and the automation of reporting.
The AMA also called for banning 3-D printed firearms.
“The proliferation of 3-D printers will increase access to guns in an unregulated manner. We need to address this issue now before these weapons play a role in the terrifying rate of gun violence in this country,” McAneny said.
The AMA is taking up the issue of gun violence a week after a position paper from the ACP prompted a public rebuke from the National Rifle Association. Physicians quickly responded by asserting their prominent position in reducing firearm-related injuries and deaths.
Transparency in food labeling
The AMA also adopted another policy at the meeting to improve transparency in food labeling and packaging, particularly for added sugars and allergens, by encouraging the FDA to implement front-of-package warning labels.
The policy urges the FDA to enforce limitations to the amount of sugar permitted in foods that make claims about health or nutrient content.
“When consumers have access to the amount of sugar they are consuming they may choose foods with less sugar — which can help prevent debilitating chronic medical conditions, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease which affect millions of Americans,” Albert J. Osbahr, III, MD, a member of the AMA Board of Trustees, said in a press release. – by Alaina Tedesco
Disclosures: McAneny is the president of AMA. Osbahr is a member of the AMA Board of Trustees.