Funds to fix violence in our hospitals
THE State Government will pour $5 million into reducing violence in WA hospitals.
The announcement follows reports of a rise in assaults on nurses at Bentley Hospital of more than 450 per cent (Gazette, 01/08/19).
There were 41 reported nurse assaults from July 2018 to December 2018 following the opening of the East Metropolitan Youth Clinic, compared to just seven the year before.
Health Minister Roger Cook said the funding in this year’s budget would go towards immediate shortterm solutions, include an increase in security staff numbers, additional specialists in alcohol and other drugs at five major hospitals, and a public awareness campaign.
“One act of aggression towards our hospital staff is one act too many,” Mr Cook said.
“This new funding is the first step to stamp out this deplorable trend of violence and ensure our staff feel safe.”
The initiatives were formed out of a Stop the Violence summit in June involving healthcare staff, security, unions and other stakeholders. Longer term initiatives include partnering with police to improve patient handover, reviewing security equipment such as CCTV and improved training for handling aggressive patients.