Following an alarming rise in the number of assaults on NHS staff and emergency response teams in the health industry, which is now at 193 attacks per day, Nick Ferrari of LBC (a London based Radio station) have created a petition to introduce harsher penalties for those who assault emergency health workers.
At a time where employees across the NHS are feeling immense pressure, this petition proposes an introduction of a specific law to act as a deterrent from attacking these critically important workers.
“I hope that this campaign will help to make a real difference to reducing the number of serious incidents that all doctors and medical staff are subjected to.
As workloads rise, and staff are under greater pressure from the demands of patients that are harder to meet, the risk that patients take out their frustration on those who are trying to help them increases. The mechanisms must be there to minimise the likelihood of attacks, to support staff who experience them, and to ensure that anyone who commits an act of violence is dealt with appropriately.”
Dr Mark Porter, Chair of the British Medical Association council
“Health care staff work extremely hard in what are very challenging conditions. It is unacceptable that they are at risk of assault simply by going to work.
“This campaign is vital in raising awareness of the dangers NHS staff face – and why wilful assaults must never be tolerated. Nursing staff need to be treated with the care and respect they show patients every day.”
Kim Sunley, Senior Employment Relations Adviser, Royal College of Nurses
“If you assault a police officer, it is a specific offence. It’s time we protect our emergency medical staff in the same way.”
Nick Ferarri, LBC
What the GEMS Campaign is really about
While this legislation will not completely remove the threat of violence and risk from emergency situations, it will necessarily provide a real deterrent for those who think about attacking health workers. This change is critical to ensuring health workers do not leave the industry following fear of attack or serious injury.
It will also empower health workers with the high level of respect and status they deserve while working to protect the lives of others. With this alarming trend on the increase, it seems that this change in legislation is of paramount importance to ensure we have a strong, robust and effective NHS.