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Penn Medicine Joins Forces With City, State Leaders To Address Philadelphia's Gun Violence Epidemic

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- As gun violence continues to rise throughout Philadelphia, doctors are saying enough. Some in the Philadelphia medical community came together Friday with city and state leaders to not only discuss the violence but share plans on how to stop it.

Historic gun violence in Philadelphia is leading to a multifaceted approach to trying to stem the rising numbers. There have been more than 500 murders thus far this year, with more than 1,700 shootings and now, Penn Medicine is joining forces with city, state and local leaders to address the gun violence epidemic.

"I am the founder and CEO of the Jarell Christopher Seay Love and Laughter Foundation, an organization that was founded in honor of my son Jarell, who we lost to gun violence, 2011, Easter Sunday, on my porch in West Philadelphia," Cheryl Seay said.

Rep. Dwight Evans represents West Philadelphia, an area plagued by crime. He says federal efforts are underway to address the gun violence in the city, and even President Joe Biden is now involved.

"I've also met with the division of the ATF to discuss getting illegal guns," Evans said. "Also, I have written the president about this issue."

"This violence can be prevented like a disease, we can work to detect and interrupt conflicts, identify and treat high-risk individuals and change social norms," Councilmember Jamie Gauthier said. "And partnership of the medical community is absolutely key."

The Penn Injury Science Center is delving deeper into the science behind stopping the violence.

"How do we stop an injury? Or how do we stop a gunshot before it starts? But also how do we best treat the injury and provide the best care and trauma support to those in need?" Sara Solomon, with the center, said.

Organizers say this candid conversation addressing gun violence is just the beginning, of an urgent, collaborative call to action.

The panel specifically discussed strategies to curb gun violence in West and Southwest Philadelphia. Those are the areas it says are disproportionately affected by crime right now.

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

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