Government announces violence reduction strategy as attacks on NHS staff still growing

  • Published on: 21 November 2018
  • By: Paula
Government announces violence reduction strategy as attacks on NHS staff still growing

On 12 November 2018 The Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act became law.  Meaning anyone who attacks the police, fire service, paramedics, nurses and other emergency service workers will face tougher sentences, with the maximum jail sentence being increased from 6 to 12 months.

As violence against NHS staff continues to increase, reaching its highest rate in five years the government is taking steps to turn this trend around.

Last month Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health & Social Care announced the first ever NHS violence reduction strategy; he said:

“NHS staff dedicate their lives to protecting and caring for us in our times of greatest need and for any one of them to be subject to aggression or violence is completely unacceptable.

I have made it my personal mission to ensure NHS staff feel safe and secure at work and the new violence reduction strategy will be a key strand of that.

We will not shy away from the issue – we want to empower staff and give them greater confidence to report violence, knowing that they will see meaningful action from trusts and a consistent prosecution approach from the judicial system.”

A zero-tolerance approach is being taken to protect NHS staff from deliberate violence and aggression from patients, their families and the public.   

The NHS will work closely with the Police and Crown Prosecution Service to help victims give evidence and get prosecutions quickly.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) will, as part of future inspections, examine violence reduction plans and identify NHS trusts in need of extra support.

NHS Staff will be provided with improved training to help them deal with violence and those affected will receive prompt mental health support.  They will also be able to more easily record assaults or abuse in order to gain a better understanding of the reasons, and NHS Trusts will be expected to investigate all incidents and learn lessons to help prevent future violence.

The most recent NHS staff survey showed 15% of employees experienced violence from patients, relatives or the public in the last 12 months.

Leisuresec provides hospital security

As a company providing security operatives to hospitals, Leisuresec understands the difficulties staff face as part of their daily work.  There have been many occasions where Leisuresec operatives have been called to help staff with patients or relatives, intervening to prevent injuries.  

Leisuresec operatives are trained in conflict management skills and physical intervention. Our PI trainer specialises in teaching humane non-pain based physical intervention, but even then it will be only considered as a last resort.  The majority of the time operatives use communication skills and conflict management strategies learned, such as body language skills, NLP and language patterns and understanding mental health, to calm aggressive patients or visitors.     

There have been numerous occasions where Leisuresec personnel have been praised for their use of safe methods of control. 

If you would like to see how Leisuresec can help, please get in touch.