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After fatal shooting, Tennessee surgeon remembered as ‘beloved’ and ‘brilliant’

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Authorities say Dr. Ben Mauck was shot and killed at the Campbell Clinic just outside Memphis. Some are demanding more protections for doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers.

Dr. Ben Mauck was fatally shot in an exam room at the Campbell Clinic outside Memphis, authorities said. (Photo: Campbell Clinic)

Dr. Ben Mauck was fatally shot in an exam room at the Campbell Clinic outside Memphis, authorities said. (Photo: Campbell Clinic)

A day after the fatal shooting of Dr. Ben Mauck, all of the Campbell Clinic’s locations were closed Wednesday.

Mauck was fatally shot in the Campbell Clinic outside Memphis, Tenn. Police said they arrested the suspect moments after the shooting, NBC News reports.

Malini Gupta, a physician in Memphis, said on Twitter that Mauck was a friend and colleague, describing him as a “brilliant hand surgeon.” She also lamented losing a friend to gun violence and urged others to, as she said, have a hand in doing something about gun violence.

The Campbell Clinic asked the community to rally around Mauck’s family.

“We are shocked and heartbroken to confirm the incident resulted in the tragic loss of one of our highly respected and beloved physicians, Dr. Ben Mauck. We ask that you please lift his family in prayer," the clinic said in a statement.

Since 2013, Mauck had also served as the director of the Congenital Hand Deformities Clinic at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital.

“We are grieved for the loss of Dr. Ben Mauck,” the hospital said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. He left a mark on the lives of the many patients he helped and our Le Bonheur family. We hold the entire Campbell Clinic team in our hearts at this time of unimaginable tragedy.”

Authorities said the shooting took place in an exam room at the Campbell Clinic in Collierville, USA Today reported. The suspect, Larry Pickens, 29, of Memphis, has been charged with first-degree murder, and authorities have not disclosed a motive.

Mauck joined the Campbell Clinic in 2012, according to a biography on the clinic’s website. He performed pediatric and congenital hand surgery. Around the July 4 holiday, Mauck appeared in a local news report on WMC-TV in Memphis, urging parents to keep children from playing with fireworks.

Mauck’s shooting elicited renewed calls for legislation to protect healthcare workers.

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, a Democrat representing Memphis, expressed sympathies to Mauck’s family and also urged lawmakers to support a bipartisan bill designed to protect healthcare workers.

“There's no excuse for anyone to not support it,” Cohen, a cosponsor of the bill, said on Twitter.

The bill, Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act, would direct the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to require facilities to have workplace violence prevention plans. U.S. Reps. Alma Adams, R-N.C., and Joe Courtney, D-Conn., are the prime sponsors. Lawmakers have introduced similar measures for years without success.

Lawmakers have also been pushing measures to impose tougher penalties for those who attack healthcare workers, similar to federal protection for airline employees. That bill also failed to win passage in the last Congress.

Hospitals and healthcare facilities are seeing more violence in recent years, physicians and executives say.

Last week, Sgt. Heather Glenn, an Indiana police officer, was shot and killed by a suspect accused of domestic violence in Perry County Memorial Hospital in southern Indiana. Police fatally shot the suspect in that incident.

A CDC employee was fatally shot at a medical complex owned by Northside Hospital in Atlanta in May. Four others were wounded in the shooting.

A nurse and a social worker were fatally shot at Methodist Dallas Medical Center in Dallas, Texas in October 2022. Authorities said the suspect was assaulting his girlfriend in the maternity unit and shot the victims after they entered the patient’s room.

Four people were killed in a shooting at a medical building on the campus of the Saint Francis Health System in Tulsa, Oklahoma in June 2022. Authorities said the suspect was upset because of postoperative pain. Two doctors, a receptionist and a patient were killed.

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