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September 23, 2020

Current Epidemiological Trends in Firearm Mortality in the United States

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • 2Injury Prevention Center, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
JAMA Psychiatry. 2021;78(3):241-242. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2020.2986

More than 652 000 people in the US died from firearm injuries between 1999 and 2018.1 Given that firearms are embedded within US culture (in 2018, 21.9% of individuals owned a firearm and 35.2% lived in households with firearms2) evidence-based public health measures and policies that enhance firearm safety are needed. Firearm injuries are multifaceted; for example, there are nearly twice as many nonfatal firearm injuries as deaths, and assaults comprise a majority of nonfatal injuries while suicides comprise a majority of deaths.3 In this Viewpoint, we narrowed the scope to firearm mortality trends from 1999 to 2018 and current regional/demographic trends available from US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention WISQARS/WONDER.1,4

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