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Philadelphia ER doctor shares how to cope with gun violence

Emotional fallout of Roxborough HS shooting impacting many in community
Emotional fallout of Roxborough HS shooting impacting many in community 01:58

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The emotional fallout from the quintuple shooting outside of Roxborough High School that left a 14-year-old football player dead is impacting many in the community. The daily assault of gun violence creates a lot of anxiety.

"It does not feel like a city," Einstein Medical Center Dr. Erica Harris said. "It feels like a warzone."

Harris is on the front lines of the war in the emergency department at Einstein Medical Center, where she says there's a never-ending arrival of gunshot victims who are getting younger and younger.

"It's very traumatizing for us to care for these victims," Harris said, "especially multiple victims at one time."

She says the trauma teams are trained professionals who focus on patients and medical interventions, but there's no escaping the emotional challenges of treating young football players with gunshot injuries.

"I'm a physician, but I'm also a mom and I have little children," Harris said. "My son just started football and it's hard not to see my son in that, that that could be my child. And that's what I think of when I'm talking to parents of victims."

Harris is on Einstein's gun violence task force and heads the trauma intervention program for staff and the community.

"It is absolutely crucial to talk about fears and anxieties, concerns that people have," she said. "We are a community. We are here for each other. We have to be. It is not other people's problems."

Harris says in addition to supporting each other, parents need to take responsibility.

"I think parents need to know what their children are doing. I think you need to ask questions of your children," Harris said. "I think that the key is to be a community. I think that you need to know who your neighbors are. I think you need to know that you are there to support one another."

For a list of gun violence resources in Philadelphia, click here.

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