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Exploring Risk Factors for Gun-related Death in New Jersey

Nationally, more than 300,000 persons died from gun-related violence from 2003-2012. The estimated cost of gun related injuries were $174.1 billion in 2010. The prevalence of gun-related death in 2015 was 32% higher than in 2000 in New Jersey (NJ). However, little research has been done on gun violence causality and its policy implications on prevention and intervention in NJ and the nation.

This study aims to:

  1. describe forms of gun-related death by demographic background
  2. assess circumstance indicators by forms of gun-related death
  3. explore health related risk factors for gun-related death

We will conduct secondary data analysis on New Jersey State Health Assessment Data (NJSHAD), National Violent Death Reporting System data, and chart reviews on New Jersey Trauma Center (NJTC) databank. Measures from the most recent 5 years (2013-2017) will be included in the study.

In-hospital and prehospital deaths due to homicide, suicide, homicide-suicide, and other gun-related injuries. Risk factors include demographics, circumstance variables, and clinical indicators. Results: Mean age was 40 and most were males (90%). Among those who died 39% were white, 47% African American, and 11% Hispanic. The majority of gun violence deaths were homicides (54%), followed by suicides (37.7%). Two fifths of injured individuals died at the hospital (41.3%). Almost half of deaths were related to gunshot wounds to the head (48%). One fourth of deaths are related to youth violence (24.1%) and 11.8% of deaths were intimate partner violence (IPV) related incidents. More than one tenth of deaths (13.1%) were associated with crime.a

By better understanding gun-related violence and its predictors among various populations, we can develop better interventions to reduce various forms of gun-related death.

Project Status:
Completed Report

Principal Investigator (PI):
Ping-hsin Chen, Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, New Jersey Medical School, Rutgers—Newark

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