Ambulance staff suffer 111 assaults in a year

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South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) staff reported more than 100 physical assaults in 2012-13.

A total of 111 assaults were reported with 65 of them not involving medical factors.

A spokesman for the service said: “SECAmb takes any assault or threat of assault extremely seriously and will always, where possible, take action with the help of the police and Crown Prosecution Service, to prosecute those responsible.

“A total of 16 sanctions were achieved against those responsible in 2012-13.”

In Hove, a member of the public was given a community order and ordered to pay compensation after assaulting a SECAmb member of staff in December 2012.

In Herne Bay, Kent a member of the public was given a six-month referral order and ordered to pay compensation after assaulting a clinician in September 2012.

And in Ash Vale, Surrey, an assault on a member of staff in August 2012 resulted in the individual responsible being given a community order and paying court costs and compensation.

In a recent incident last month a female paramedic was assaulted and suffered a jaw injury after being kicked and punched by a woman she was trying to treat in St Leonards, East Sussex.

Paramedic and SECAmb Local Security Management Specialist, Colin Taylor, works with the police to ensure where possible those responsible for assaulting or threatening a member of SECAmb staff are held accountable for their actions.

He said: “We work hard to ensure that our staff are not placed at risk but sadly a very small minority of the members of the public our crews come into contact with behave in a manner which the overwhelming majority find totally unacceptable.

“We encourage staff to report any incidents, both physical and verbal and will always look to work with the police and CPS to prosecute those responsible.”