Assaults against NHS staff on the rise

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Assaults on NHS staff are on the rise across the country, new figures have revealed today.

NHS Protect has today released the 2012-13 figures for reported physical assaults against NHS staff in England.

The statistics were collated from 341 health bodies across the country.

The number of criminal sanctions following reported assaults has risen by 201, from 1,257 to 1,458 – a rise of 15.9 per cent.

Overall, there was a rise of 5.8 per cent in total reported assaults from 59,744 in 2011/12 to 63,199 in 2012/13.

Richard Hampton, head of local support and development services at NHS Protect, said today:

“NHS staff should expect to be able to provide care in a safe environment, free from violence and physical assault. NHS Protect urges employers to take firm action in all cases of assault against NHS staff.

“We urge all NHS staff to report assault and acts of violence against them. Employers must do all they can to support staff in preventing incidents and pursuing offenders”.

New guidance is being issued shortly to help staff ‘de-escalate and reduce challenging behaviour’ within the health service.