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TFA Alarmed by Medical Providers Inquiring About Gun Ownership

Press Release from Tennessee Firearms Association Legislative Action Committee; Jan. 19, 2012:

Medical Database Being Developed of Households with Guns?

Government laws increasingly require health care providers to computerize and standard patient records. It is foreseeable that over reaching laws like Obamacare, and other government health care programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, Tenncare, and even local and state provided “public health” programs, etc., will be computerizing, standardizing and sharing patient records. For some, this seems to be a good idea.

However, was it inadvertent or intended that some medical care providers, including those who are developing patient records for government health care services, are commonly asking patients and parents of patients if there are “guns in the home.” Really? Is that even remotely relevant to an OB appointment, to having your blood pressure checked, to getting an annual physical or a well baby visit? What part of medical history, diagnosis or treatment needs to know whether there are “guns in the home.” None.

It really does not matter what fabricated excuse or concotion of lies that advocates for medical professionals asking about “guns in the home” may present, the information has no medical necessity and, as a result of electronic record keeping, can too easily be gleaned to created a governmetn database of households with firearms.

State Rep. Jeremy Faison (R.) has heard complaints from constituents and has taken action. On January 19, 2012, he introduced House Bill 2672 which has also been sponsored in the Senate by Stacey Campfield. The bill has 2 primary components.First, it provides that

No health care provider licensed under title 63, or health care facility licensed under this title shall make a written or verbal inquiry to a patient or a patient’s family member as to whether the patient or the family member owns, possesses or stores a firearm or ammunition unless the practitioner in good faith believes that the inquiry is relevant to the patient’s medical care or safety, or to the safety of others.

The second component of the bill provides that:

No company or agent issuing any type of insurance policy shall deny coverage, increase any premium, or discriminate against any insured or applicant for insurance on the basis of or upon reliance on an insured or applicant’s lawful ownership or possession of a firearm or ammunition or the lawful use or storage of a firearm or ammunition.

Each of these categories of events are real concerns for Tennessee’s Firearms Owners.

Although the bill is not even 24 hours old, it is reported that lobbyists for the medical interests are already hard at work to kill this legislation. It is also reported that there may be many co-sponsors already on the bill.

Its time to take action. As other Alerts have already indicated, there is pressure coming primarily from House leadership (Speaker Harwell) to discourage any 2nd Amendment legislation. When we see legislators such as Faison and Campfield moving forward with 2nd Amendment legislation in this environment then it is a NECESSITY that the citizens and voters who support these bills and the efforts to protect and defend the rights of citizens lend aid and assistance to support them.

Call your Representatives and Senators (look them up, their phones, addresses and emails at the links) and urge them to co-sponsor these bills and help push them to the respective floors for a full, recorded vote. Help the stand against those who seek to continue this kind of abuse and the risk that electronic medical records can be used to collect data which might be culled to generate a database of gun owner households.

Act now.