Trends in Hospital Care for Intentional Assault Gunshot Wounds among Residents of Cook County, Illinois, 2018–2020

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives. To examine gun violence with respect to hospital visits for treatment of intentional assault gunshot wounds (IGWs). Methods. IGW-coded visits among residents of Cook County, Illinois, were matched to census zip code tabulation areas (ZCTAs) to map changes in IGW visit frequencies between 2018 and 2020. Patient characteristics were compared across years, and Poisson regression models for the likelihood of an inpatient admission or in-hospital death were estimated. Results. Over the study period, Cook County residents made 7122 IGW-coded hospital visits to 89 Illinois hospitals, resulting in $342 million in charges and 24 894 hospital days. The number of visits almost doubled between 2018 and 2020, from 1553 to 3031; 6 ZCTAs had increases of more than 60 visits. Approximately one third of patients with a visit were admitted, and 6.5% died. Conclusions. Hospital statistics do not include the full toll of nonfatal gun injuries or the costs of related community-level trauma. The health care system remains crucial in implementing epidemiological approaches to violence prevention. Addressing the national spike in shootings will require large investments in community economic development and a professional public safety workforce. (Am J Public Health. 2022;112(5):795–802. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2022.306747)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)795-802
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume112
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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