Reduction in attacks on NHS staff

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MEDICS have welcomed a new study which shows that attacks on NHS staff have dropped in Sheffield’s biggest hospitals.

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, which runs the city’s four major hospitals, said there has been a “significant reduction” in the number of incidents against staff in the last 12 months.

Attacks have fallen from 1,105 to 790 and a recent review of all incidents also showed that 96 per cent of all reported assaults tended to be associated with the medical conditions of patients rather than deliberate attacks.

A high percentage also related to patients who were suffering from brain injuries, withdrawing from drink and drugs or a particular reaction to a medication at the time of incidents.

Chief nurse Prof Hilary Chapman said: “Many patients are not deliberately aggressive or violent but due their medical condition sometimes assaults can occur. We do carry out appropriate risk assessments and always try to ensure that we have the correct staff in place to care for patients safely.

“However, in other cases deliberate intimidation or violence can occur and we have a zero tolerance policy which reflects our attitude to this.”