Using statewide hospital discharge data from 2005 to 2014, this study aimed to describe and identify predictors of firearm assault among young Black men ages 18 to 44 in Arkansas. Descriptive analyses of data were performed for patient demographics (age, marital status, residential location, etc.), injury, and health care information (hospital charges, length of stay, mortality, time, day and season of injury, etc.). Logistic regression analysis was performed to identify significant predicting factors for firearm assault among this population. Most of the sample survived firearm assault injury, were ages 18-35, were not married, resided in Central Arkansas, and were admitted to a Central Arkansas hospital during night hours on weekends. The majority had a short hospital stay, and total charges exceeded $34 million during the study observation years. Most patients had no diagnosis of a mental disorder, and a little less than half had drug use disorders. Being ages 18-25, living in the Central region of Arkansas, and being married were all significant predictors of firearm assault for this population. Death was also significantly associated with firearm assault. Our findings lay the groundwork for understanding firearm assault injury among young Black men in Arkansas. Research should be expanded to examine other important data sources for firearm assault and to further explore the context of predicting factors, in order to provide a more comprehensive understanding of firearm assault and to better inform future prevention efforts.
Keywords: alcohol and drugs; community violence; mental health and violence; violence; violence exposure.