Shocking attacks on NHS staff

Dear Editor,

It was both depressing and alarming to read that assaults on community nurses and mental health workers in Cumbria have shot up.

We all know that regrettably attacks on our NHS staff take place far too often. Violence, both physical and verbal, on health workers, also including paramedics and doctors, should never ever occur.

Understandably patients and their relatives are often in a tense state when needing medical care, both in a community and hospital setting, but they should not vent aggression on anyone, let alone those trying to help. 

Mental health problems in society are on the rise, through a combination of factors, and staff are specially trained to help them, ideally without being assaulted. Sadly some of those with serious mental health issues are always going to be a potential risk and drink and drug abuse exacerbates this.

A total of 17% of staff within Cumbria Partnership NHS Trust reported suffering physical violence while working last year.I sincerely hope that the next set of figures does not show a further rise. Our selfless health workers, both in the community and in hospital settings, should be able to carry out their duties free from fear.

Yours faithfully

Louise Bours, MEP

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