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NPR

Hard To Identify Many Mass Murders As Mentally Ill Beforehand

In the modern era, legislative attempts to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill are nearly half a century old. In many ways, we've made little or no progress. There are numerous reasons for this failure and those reasons explain why the odds of success of any new legislative initiative to the problem of mentally ill having access to guns is very, very low. These challenges explain why none of the three of the most prominent recent mass shooters — Jared Loughner, Seung-Hui Cho and Adam Lanza — would have been affected by any current legislation involving the mentally ill and guns. Loughner had not met the conditions necessary for reporting his name to the federal database and he obtained weapons legally from a dealer. Cho was not deemed at imminent risk of causing harm, and was not involuntarily committed, and he was therefore not reported. Lanza does not seem to have been involuntarily committed, either, and, in any event, he didn't buy guns from a dealer — he simply took guns belonging to a family member.
NPR

Mental Health Gun Laws Unlikely To Reduce Shootings

A New York law that requires mental health professionals to report potentially violent patients probably won't accomplish much, specialists say. Studies show that even highly trained professionals are often wrong about which patients become violent.
NPR

Why A Young Man Died In A Nursing Home, A State Away From His Mom

Zach Sayne, who died this month at age 25 in Alabama, never made it home to Georgia where his mother hoped he would be cared for. The story of why she couldn't move him there shows the bureaucratic traps, underfunding and lack of choices that plague state Medicaid programs.
NPR

Cutting Sugar Consumption Helps Keep Extra Weight Off

Adults who upped their intake of sugary foods or drinks gained about a pound a year, a study found. But the researchers say it's impossible to say how much cutting back sugar would reduce obesity because sugar's not the only problem.
NPR

When Is It Safe To Go Back To Work After The Flu?

Host Michel Martin isn't the only person who's been "under the weather" lately. She chats with NPR science correspondent Rob Stein about the nation-wide flu outbreak.

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