Nurses want body cameras to protect them after rise in assaults

Nurses want body cameras to protect them after rise in assaults


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Nurses want the NHS to give them body cameras to deter and record violence against them.

The calls come after a rise in assaults on NHS staff in East Lancashire and nationally.

It prompted nurses at the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Congress on Monday to call for body cameras to combat the increasing levels of violence in A&E and on hospital wards.

Figures show there were 222 assaults on East Lancashire Hospitals Trust (ELHT) staff in 2016/17, an increase of 19.35 per cent from 186 in 2015/16.

The figure for Lancashire Care was 1,711 last year, compared to 1,651 the previous year.

North West Ambulance Service recorded 418 attacks on its staff in 2016/17, 25 more than the 393 in 2015/16.

Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Trust saw the biggest rise at 62 per cent, with 365 assaults on NHS staff in 2016/17 compared to 137 in 2015/16.

The data, from 181 of the NHS’s 244 hospital trusts, was obtained by the Health Service Journal on behalf of the union Unison under the Freedom of Information Act.

Nationally, there were 56,435 physical assaults on NHS staff in 2016/17, up 9.7 per cent from 51,447 the year before.

Nurses in Berrywood Hospital were given Calla body cameras to protect patients and staff, with nurses feedback:

“I think it prevents lots of aggression and puts patients’ minds at ease knowing there is a record of what happened.”

“I have seen a few occasions where the incident had deescalated and believe this to have been helped by the camera being turned on.”

"I can see nothing but positives from it with recourse to its potential in reducing/ deescalating violent incidents.” 

See how Calla body cameras are helping Berrywood Hospital here

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