Durham Orange County Medical Society Brings Issue of Gun Control to NCMS Board

When Durham Orange County Medical Society (DOCMS) board members met with the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Board of Directors in Chapel Hill on May 18 they pointedly asked about the NCMS’ stand on gun control legislation.

“Does the NCMS take a stance on gun control laws?” asked DOCMS Board President Holly Biola, MD, MPH, FAAFP. She described a recent rally urging gun control she attended wearing her white coat and the positive response she received. But she was dismayed that she didn’t see more white coats in the crowd.

“As a medical society we have a certain responsibility to take a stand on this,” DOCMS vice-president Khalil Tanas, MD, told the Board.

NCMS Senior Vice President for Advocacy, Chip Baggett, JD, recounted the NCMS’ policy on gun control. Read the official policy statement in the NCMS Policy Manual under Safety: Firearms.

“Gun control is not really a focus in the NC Legislature, rather it’s more about school safety,” he said. He listed current pending legislation before the North Carolina General Assembly that the NCMS has supported including an $85 million appropriation for school nurses; expedited licensing for school psychologists and funding for improved communications during school lockdowns. Read more about these bills on our Legislative blog. The NCMS successfully lobbied in the past to defend physicians’ and physicians assistant’s ability to talk to patients about guns, which a previous bill had sought to outlaw.

Dr. Biola suggested that the NCMS do more promotion of its stance.


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1 Comment

  • Chuck Willson

    There is one constant in all mass killings in the US in the past ten years: the presence of a gun.
    Other countries don’t have mad men and boys walking into schools and killing our youth. We at NCMS should be at the forefront in exposing the myth that guns are not the issue. We should start with a ban on the sale of military rifles.
    Please NCMS, take a lead.