Our staff are here to help…not get hurt

Posted on Mon, 04/11/2019

The last couple of years has seen a rise in abusive behaviour against NHS staff in Gateshead so the hospital has released a number of new posters reminding the public that bad behaviour won’t be tolerated and can have serious consequences.

Although serious incidents are thankfully still quite rare, NHS staff regularly face low level abuse and encounter unacceptable behaviour at a time when they are just doing their job. Over the past five years the number of incidents of violence or aggression recorded against staff has risen by 9.5%.

A number of new posters are now being used across the hospital and on social media to help remind the public of the real people behind the uniforms and the behaviour policy at the hospital.

Yvonne Ormston MBE, chief executive at Gateshead Health said: “NHS staff shouldn’t have to face violence or abuse just for doing their job so in Gateshead we operate a zero tolerance policy on this type of behaviour. To If you do abuse our staff we will take action to prosecute. All our staff are here to help people and care for patients so I’d ask everyone to really think twice before abusing NHS workers.

“We understand that people who use our services, particularly in areas like A&E, are often in very stressful situations but that isn’t an excuse for abusing NHS staff who are doing their best to help the public day in and day out.

“We just want to remind people that abuse, violence or threatening behaviour against anyone working for the NHS either in hospital or out in the community won’t be tolerated on our sites.”

The Trust has a specific policy for intrusive, violent or aggressive behaviour and will take decisive action to protect its staff, patients and visitors.

This is enforced by a dedicated security team and the police, but it doesn’t just include physical violence or threats. Examples of unacceptable behaviour include:

  • Derogatory racial or sexual remarks
  • Offensive sexual gestures or behaviours
  • Making threats or threatening behaviour
  • Wilful damage to NHS property
  • Threatening or abusive language
  • Continual shouting or making offensive remarks

You can read more by clicking here

For staff affected by these issues the organisation also provides lots of support including decided Occupational Health services, specialist counselling and a guardian of safe working.

To see all the posters in a photo gallery click here

Call us on 0191 482 0000

In emergencies dial 999 / Non-emergencies dial 111

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