OUR SAY: Hospital abuse a concern

EVEN under normal circumstances, hospital emergency departments are somewhere you'd rather not spend any time.

It's bad enough being there as a patient but it takes a special sort of person to spend hour after hour dealing with the endless stream of sick and injured who come through the doors.

So there is absolutely no reason they should be subjected to physical and verbal abuse from some of the very people they are trying to help.

But the sad reality is that abuse of hospital staff is not uncommon.

It's a particular problem in the Emergency Department but is an issue in all areas of our hospitals.

For some reason, nasty drunks, addled drug addicts and people who simply have a bad attitude seem to think it's okay to take out their anger and frustrations on hospital staff.

It's become so bad the state government will trial duress alarms and body cameras for the staff while violent visitors could find themselves banned from hospital buildings.

Proving the Sunshine Coast is not immune to the problem, local health officials have given the proposal their full support and are keen to be included in any trials.

Sadly, this is not a new problem but it has become so bad that drastic measure are needed.

The State Government deserves praise for taking the bull by the horns.

We can only hope the planned measures make a difference because one thing is certain - the problem isn't going to go away by itself.


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