Upswing of nurse assaults in emergency room of local hospital

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on October 3, 2013 at 7:28 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 4 at 8:12 AM

 (KMOV) --  News 4 tracked a string of violent attacks in the emergency room of a West County hospital.

Nurses have been kicked or punched at St. Mary’s Hospital in Richmond Heights three times in the last two weeks.

Bruises are about all that’s left after three nurses in her ER were attacked by patients. Two were punched and a third was kicked and knocked to the ground. In two of the cases, the patients were intoxicated.

“We do have our own security staff and we call police when an assault does occur and they come in and make a decision on what we need to do with that,” said Kelley.

Alice Jensen taught nursing at Maryville University for 20years and said she tried to prepare her students for risks they’ll face.

She said nurses in emergency rooms and psychiatric hospitals get special training to know how to spot a situation that could lead to a violent action by a patient and how to deal with them.

“And part of it is related to how to sort of talk down people so they feel like they’re being heard. I actually include that with my nursing students,” said Jensen.

Although these attacks occurred late at night, the hospital says they don’t happen more often on one shift than another.

Richmond Heights Police investigated the attacks and warrants against the patients are pending. 

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