The BC Nurses’ Union began sounding the alarm about violent attacks on nurses by patients many months ago. Recently, negotiations with the Ministry of Health have resulted in new commitments to violence prevention at nurses’ worksites.
BCNU President Gayle Duteil says, “I’m encouraged the Ministry has now agreed there is a problem, that it’s unacceptable nurses are being injured on the job and that it negatively impacts quality of care.”
Duteil says any changes can’t come soon enough for nurses working on the front lines. “Nurses put themselves at risk every day while trying to provide safe patient care. Many violent attacks could be prevented by increasing safety officers, providing personal alarms, specialized training and appropriate staffing for patients’ care needs, especially those who are aggressive or violent.”
The Ministry of Health has committed to a plan that will initially gather information from four sites out of twelve BCNU has identified as needing immediate attention:
Ministry officials have promised to consider all solutions BCNU has proposed.
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