Insp. Ai­dan Hig­gins

East Kilbride News - - COMMUNITY POLICING -

in­ves­ti­ga­tion last year re­vealed that Hairmyres work­ers were at­tacked in the line of duty 605 times over a three-year pe­riod. Insp. Hig­gins said: “Po­lice of­fi­cers in Wishaw are work­ing with NHS La­nark­shire in a joint ef­fort to im­prove how all part­ners sup­port those with men­tal health or ad­dic­tion is­sues who are re­ported miss­ing from the hospi­tal. “The pur­pose is to iden­tify where im­prove­ments can be made in re­spond­ing to miss­ing per­son in­ci­dents, par­tic­u­larly from the emer­gency de­part­ment. “Cur­rently two of­fi­cers from the lo­cal prob­lem solv­ing team are work­ing to test the con­cept of po­lice of­fi­cers be­ing de­ployed in Univer­sity Hospi­tal Wishaw. “Ini­tial data gath­ered from all in­volved has shown im­prove­ments in prac­tices and com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween ev­ery­one as re­la­tion­ships are be­ing es­tab­lished.

“The test is due to be ex­tended to Univer­sity Hospi­tal Mon­k­lands be­fore an eval­u­a­tion will be shared. There are cur­rently no plans to ex­tend the pi­lot to Hairmyres.

“An as­sess­ment will be made of the im­pact of the pi­lot by both Po­lice Scot­land La­nark­shire Divi­sion and NHS La­nark­shire on its con­clu­sion.”

He added: “Any op­por­tu­ni­ties for Po­lice Scot­land and NHS La­nark­shire to work closer to­gether to ben­e­fit the lo­cal com­mu­nity and vul­ner­a­ble peo­ple should be ex­plored.

“If the scheme is as­sessed as be­ing of value and con­se­quently rolled out across NHS La­nark­shire hospi­tals I would wel­come a sim­i­lar scheme at Hairmyres.”

Wishaw’s area com­man­der, Chief In­spec­tor Mark Leonard, re­vealed that 177 hours of po­lice time was spent at the area’s acute hospi­tal in 2016/17.

Wishaw PCs Craig Buchanan and Scott Aird have now set­tled into their new hospi­tal ‘beat’ and have been pleased with the re­sponse from the pub­lic and staff.

NHS La­nark­shire did not wish to com­ment at this time.

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