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NHS Hospital Attacks ‘Every 3 Minutes’

Somehow in all the flood of recent news we almost missed this article from the UK’s Telegraph:


Attack in NHS hospital ‘every three minutes’

Someone is attacked in an NHS hospital in England every three minutes as doctors describe A&E departments as ‘war zones’, official figures show.

04 Nov 2009

Nearly 170,000 violent incidents take place in England’s NHS hospitals each year, data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act has revealed.

Labour’s laws on 24-hour drinking are being blamed for alcohol-fuelled violence in accident and emergency departments in particular.

There have been several murders and rapes at hospitals in recent years and thousands of attacks annually involve the use of knives and other weapons.

Almost one in four attacks results in injury, yet only a fraction of them are ever reported to the police.

The statistics reveal the dangers that doctors, nurses, paramedics, patients and visitors face in our hospitals on a daily basis.

Some hospital A & E departments have been described as "war zones" on a typical Friday or Saturday night.

Staff report having knives pulled on them and being punched, kicked and spat at while running battles between rival gangswith knives have been reported in in A & E departments.

Health unions and patients’ groups branded the figures "shameful".

Of 247 NHS trusts in England, nearly half responded to the Freedom of Information Act request for the number of violent incidents that had taken place "on hospital grounds".

They reported 80,831 violent incidents in 2006 and 74,712 in 2007 – in total and an average of 77,772 a year.

The same scale of violence across the remaining trusts would see a total of 169,997 incidents taking place each year.

The responses revealed several murders and rapes at hospitals in 2006 and 2007.

Among them, paranoid schizophrenic Telahum Tedola, 36, strangled Rosalind McManus, 58, to death. She was in the next bed on a mixed sex ward

In April 2006, trainee accountant and former altar boy Stuart Harling, 19, stabbed nurse Cheryl Moss, 33, more than 70 times in a frenzied attack.

He had spent months playing violent computer games and researching how to kill

Of the reported outbreaks of violence, 1,496 involved weapons in 2006 and 1,160 in 2007 – an average of 1,328 equating to around 2,902 across all the trusts each year.

In March, a report likened some wards at shambolic Stafford Hospital to a "war zone" and said that patients had been wandering around the hospital fighting each other.

In May, police had to seal off Ealing General Hospital’s A & E department in west London for six hours after a gang knife fight erupted in the grounds.

Last year, rival gangs armed with knives clashed in supposedly secure treatment areas at London’s King’s College Hospital A & E unit until 20 police officers arrived.

In 2006, 18742 attacks were recorded as having caused injury and 18,236 in 2007 – an average of 18,489 which means around 40,414 incidents result in harm annually across all the trusts.

But only 4,317 of the attacks were ever reported to the police in 2006 and 4,372 in 2007, an average of 4,345 a year which would equate to 9,497 across all the trusts annually…

Coming to a hospital near you.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, November 5th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “NHS Hospital Attacks ‘Every 3 Minutes’”

  1. Confucius says:

    It’s been here for years–mostly in the Emergency Room and Labor & Delivery Area.

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