Gun violence biggest threat to public health in U.S., poll finds

Gun violence in the U.S. has become more menacing than ever, as a new poll found that access to firearms is believed by a surge of people to be the leading public health threat in the country.

Access to guns, which 26 percent of respondents say is most threatening to public health in the U.S., has taken over the number one spot from opioids and fentanyl (now 25 percent), according to the newly released Axios-Ipsos poll.

A number of mass shootings in recent weeks appear to have affected people's views on public health threats. In February, only 17 percent believed access to guns was the top health issue in the U.S.

The number of people viewing access to guns and opioids and fentanyl as the leading issues is followed by obesity (20 percent) and cancer (8 percent), the poll said.

(Cover: Gun safety advocates participate in the 'March For Our Lives' rally in downtown Orlando, Florida, United States, on June 11, 2022. /CFP)

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