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Monday, as part of their semi- annual conference, the American Medical Association (AMA) voted to advocate for all state legislatures to prohibit texting while driving. Calling the action a pubic health risk, the organization was clear in it’s message.

"Texting while driving takes the driver’s attention away from the road, which can lead to accidents," said Peter Carmel, M.D., AMA board member. "A recent study found that text messaging while driving causes a 400 percent increase in time spent with eyes off the road. No one should have to worry that other drivers are focused on texting instead of traffic. This is about keeping people safe on our roads."

Presently, seven states (including Minnesota) ban text messaging (sending or reading) while driving. The District of Columbia also has a prohibition on their books. It is the AMA’s hope that all states will be looking at this as an action. The AMA also wants it’s members to educate patients on the public health risks associated with driving while distracted with text messages and cell phones.

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