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Shooting group gives GPs the facts on firearms

A motion to support compulsory psychological assessments for gun licence applicants, has been rejected after one of the delegates appealed to BASC.

GP Dr Tony Grewal contacted the association after he noticed a number of points for debate regarding firearms licensing at the British Medical Association?s (BMA) Local Medical Committee Conference, in London.

He said: ?I was concerned that some of the suggestions on shotgun and firearms licensing were onerous. I forwarded details of the motion and expressed my concerns to BASC, and was emailed an authoritative briefing which I was able to deliver almost verbatim to the conference.?

The Home Affairs Committee?s report on firearms control, published earlier this year, was also not convinced about compulsory medical checks for gun licence applicants, judging that there was no firm evidence they would achieve the desired level of certainty in the process.

A number of other proposals, which BASC said would have put undue pressure on firearms certificate holders, were also rejected, including a motion that holding a gun licence should be a privilege given by society only to those who uphold the highest personal standards of behaviour.

?I was congratulated by a senior member of the GP Committee of the BMA on a well researched and convincing speech. I gave the credit to BASC,? said Dr Grewal.

BASC?s director of firearms Bill Harriman said: ?There seems to be a view among some sections of the medical profession that public ownership of guns is a public health issue. Our efforts here secured an excellent result.?

A number of points raised at the meeting were passed, including a motion that the GP role in any application by a patient for a gun licence should be solely limited to commenting on any health factors the GP considers may be relevant.

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