Physicians to Appeal 'Docs v. Glocks' Ruling in FL
John Commins reports that physician groups will appeal the 11th Circuit ruling upholding Florida’s “Docs vs. Glocks” law. I am glad to hear that as I think the law is not only a gag on health professionals’ First Amendment rights, but a prohibition on professional speech/conduct that is a disservice to public health and safety. In my opinion, states should only be interfering in (regulating) doctor-patient discussions or care when there is sufficient evidence that a practice causes harm or puts patients at unacceptable risk. There has been no such demonstration in this case.
Just as pediatricians and those of us who work with children may routinely inquire about a child’s nutrition and sleep patterns in screening for factors that may contribute to health and functioning, so too do professionals screen for other factors that may affect our patients’ health – including the presence of guns in homes where there are impulsive or curious young children. Mental health issues such as depression or anger issues are not the only reason or justification for asking about guns.
Those supporting the Docs vs. Glocks law seem to believe that inquiring is just an attempt by professional groups to condemn guns or interfere with adults Second Amendment rights to own guns. It’s not. It’s an attempt to do our jobs properly.
And given that we are required to maintain patient confidentiality and no law requires us to record all of a patient’s answers, why is there even a problem?
In any event, the Docs vs. Glocks needs to be struck down – to protect the health and safety of the public and so that health professionals’ hands are not unreasonably tied. If the state wants to regulate our speech, it should have to meet a higher level of scrutiny.