… So far in 2022, there have been at least 623 mass shootings nationwide, according to the Gun Violence Archive. Though there’s no national database tracking the financial aftermath of mass shootings and it’s hard to estimate the total cost that can follow survivors for decades, one study published in the JAMA Network Open in May 2022 found that the average of initial hospital charges for patients injured during a mass shooting between 2012 and 2019 was more than $64,900 per person.
But those who survive the carnage are faced with not just hospital bills but the lifelong costs of an altered lifestyle: many are unable to return to work because of disabilities and may need follow-up surgeries, rehabilitation for months or years, mental health treatment and home care.
… But it’s not just the physical wounds that are costly. Survivors of mass shootings, their families and their communities are often scarred by the violence for the rest of their lives, experiencing a number of physical, mental and other setbacks, including losing their job and income because of a disability.
“Imagine a young person is shot and loses their ability to walk or work and then suddenly someone in that family has to stay home and lose their job to care for their loved one. All those economic consequences then could affect their ability to keep their housing, to put food on the table,” said Jeffrey Butts, a research professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. “Those costs could stay with them and their families for decades.”
“It’s really hard to estimate (what) the ripple effects of gun violence can extend beyond,” he added. “The safest thing to say is, it’s enormous, the economic consequence of every shooting in America.”
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