2017 Annual Report

2017            Annual Report, PPGV        550 physicians strong.

Mission Statement: Michigan Physicians, Educated and Empowered to Advocate for the Prevention of Gun Violence.

Operations. Our Executive Committee continued to meet monthly. Cochairs J. Walden and A.  Zweifler, Treasurer Zweifler and Secretary E. Arneson. Additionally, C.Farmer, S. Lewis, J. Peggs, W. Wadland, A. Weder, W. Whitehouse,  and T. Wilson composed our EC.  Marguerite (Peg) Shearer joined and Hugh Solomon, Jeffrey Tulin-Silver, and AC (Chris) Elkins stepped down.

1.Education. We made a Grand Round presentation at Muskegon Hospital and with UMMS Student AMA chapter adding new members. Additionally, Drs. Zweifler and Lewis made a special presentation in April, 2017 at the Rotary World Conference on Peace held in Ann Arbor. Presentations were made at the Rotary Club of Taylor, Michigan and the First Congregational Church of Ann Arbor. Last, Bill Wadland led in an innovative journalism class for high school students from the Grand Traverse area discussing gun violence prevention issues.

2.Curriculum. PPGV continues an affiliation with UM Psychiatry Department making a popular presentation to UM medical students (15-30 at a time) as part of their 3rd year clerkship in psychiatry. PPGV psychiatrist Sonya Lewis has assumed primary responsibility for this effort with occasional assistance from Drs.Zweifler and Peggs. Thus, PPGV presents to every UM medical student.  Our presentation continues to evolve during our presentations depending on our audience. The presentation to the psych students focuses on suicide, domestic partner abuse and children’s accidental deaths. Homicides, mass shootings, gag laws and stand your ground laws are included in grand rounds. Our medical student opportunity, begun in 2016, is considered crucial to developing the physician voice in our struggle to prevent gun violence

3.Advocacy. PPGV also advocated for smarter gun safety legislation by attending several legislative hearings in Lansing and numerous marches and rallies in support of efforts to prevent gun violence. The Michigan House passed a bill that would have allowed any legal gun owner to carry a gun anywhere he can now with no training. https://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/2017/06/07/concealed-guns-without-permits/102600024/ This bill and 30 others including allowing guns in previously off limits places like schools, hospitals, bars and day care centers caused us to visit Lansing many times giving testimony. Our testimony fell on dead ears in the Republican House and Senate. Then we wrote the legislators and finally the governor asking for his veto if the bills passed. The bills stalled fortunately.  See the website for more details.

  1. Publications and Letters to the Editor. Dr. James Peggs had a LTE in Family Medicine http://www.stfm.org/FamilyMedicine/Vol49Issue8/Peggs653  commenting on W. Wadland’s earlier article http://www.stfm.org/FamilyMedicine/Vol48Issue9/Wadland679 that it is always right to ask about guns in the home.

5.Media, Art and Celebrations. We attended the Washtenaw Co. Sheriff’s Spring Annual Gun Safety Day and Wear Orange Day, June 2.

6.Meetings. Dr. Walden attended the annual MAFP meeting to advocate for involvement in gun violence issues. Zweifler and Lewis attended the Chicago meeting (see above).

7.Partners. The Michigan Academy of Family Practice (MAFP) is planning on more cooperative work with Michigan Academy of Pediatrics on GV. Dr. Walden is a member of the MAFP Advocacy Committee. Walden became a Sandy Hook Promise leader and investigated avenues of installation of this student led program in area schools. SHP is to decrease shootings in youth by making their spaces safer.

8.Recruiting /Activism. We continue to work for a gun-free environment in our hospitals and clinics and in public spaces. With leadership from Dr. Whitehouse we were able to recruit several medical directors from St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor. We continue to work with leaders at other Trinity Health hospitals in southeastern Michigan as well as IHA. We continue to search for partners.