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The American Health Podcast is created by the Bloomberg American Health Initiative, a project of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The Initiative works to tackle some of the most pressing challenges to public health in the United States: Addiction and Overdose, Environmental Challenges, Obesity and the Food System, Risks to Adolescent Health and Violence. Visit to learn more.

Oct 11, 2018

In the national debate over gun laws, we frequently hear calls for universal background checks, which would close loopholes that exist in some states by extending background check requirements to private sales of firearms. But another policy that goes a step further has stronger evidence behind it: permit-to purchase laws, also called handgun purchaser licensing. In this episode, we’ll take a look at what these laws do, what the data says about them, and we’ll talk to some people who are hopeful that the current momentum in favor of stricter gun laws could lead to an expansion of permitting or licensing laws.