Pediatric study: More gun-related deaths in kids during pandemic

The American Academy of Pediatrics released a new study that shows there were more gun-related deaths in children and teens during the pandemic.
Gun violence continues to be a problem for kids and teens
Gun violence continues to be a problem for kids and teens(WALB)
Published: Aug. 11, 2022 at 8:16 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - The American Academy of Pediatrics released a new study that shows there were more gun-related deaths in children and teens during the pandemic.

Deaths from guns increased after the pandemic began in mid-March 2020. There was about one additional death among kids and teens per day compared to before that time, according to the study.

“Factors that may have caused the observed increase in gun-related deaths among children are unknown and include psychological and economic strain due to the pandemic as well as greater time spent at home due to school closures,” authors wrote in “Child Deaths by Gun Violence in the US During the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

Researchers found between 2014 and 2021, 8,477 children and teens 17-years-old and younger were killed, according to the Gun Violence Archive (GVA).

Of those killed, 78% were 12 to 17 years old and 79% were boys.

“The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 752 children died from COVID-19 from January 1, 2020, to December 31, 2021, implying that our estimated increase in child gun-related deaths was comparable with COVID-19–related deaths in children,” the study’s authors wrote, “These findings highlight the potential importance of indirect health outcomes in children during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“Given the coverage of the GVA in comparison with the CDC data, our figures may be underestimates,” researchers stated.

The AAP recommends families with children to not keep guns at home. If you do, keep them locked and unloaded. Ammunition should be locked separately.

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