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Personal Safety Blog

14 February 2017
 February 14, 2017
NHS doctors and nurses are at increasing risk of assault

Atmosphere Described as ‘Tinderbox’ in Hospitals as Assaults on NHS Workers Rise

It was reported last week in the national press that the number of NHS staff suffering abuse whilst on duty has again risen in the past year.

Official figures released by NHS Protect, the hospital safety advisory body show that in 2015-16 there were 70,555 assaults on doctors, nurses and other health service workers. This works out at a shocking 193 workers on average being attacked every single day.

The number of attacks has increased by nearly a quarter over the past six years, with under 5% of these resulting in criminal or civil sanctions. Many of these attacks involve medical factors, with those hospitals caring mentally ill patients recording some of the highest numbers of physical assaults.

Some fear that these worrying statistics are just the tip of the iceberg, with many incidents going unreported as staff believe that no action will be taken.

Chris Cox, Director of Membership Relations at The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) described the atmosphere in some hospitals as a “tinderbox” with “longer waits and the pressures of understaffed units” creating an

2 February 2017
 February 2, 2017
Victim of domestic abuse hiding and trying to get help

Discreet Ways to Get Help Without Alerting an Attacker

In an emergency, one of the first things most people would think to do is dial 999 – but what if this wasn’t an option as it could alert an attacker or give away your whereabouts?

Luckily there are several solutions to this particular problem. Firstly, if you are able to dial 999, but unable to speak, there is a so-called ‘silent solution’ that allows you to let emergency service operators know that you require assistance by pressing 5 twice when prompted.
How the silent 999 solution works
The usual procedure when you dial 999 is that an operator will answer and ask which service you require. They will also ask you to tap your handset screen or cough if you cannot speak. If no sound can be heard, the operator will usually suspect that you have accidentally misdialled and terminate the call.

However, if there are background noises and voices, the call will be connected to an automated police voice response system. The caller will be asked to press 55 if help is required, which if dialled correctly

24 January 2017
 January 24, 2017
NHS workers protected by personal safety alarms

NHS Trust Puts Lone Worker Safety First to Gain Improved CQC Rating

Rotherham, Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation have achieved an upgraded CQC rating following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission.

The trust which provides a range of mental health services in northern England has been rated as ‘good’ by regulators following a series of improvements.

One of the areas highlighted in the official report were measures undertaken to protect lone workers. The trust currently employs over 3,700 staff and volunteers working across 200 locations in Rotherham, Doncaster, North Lincolnshire and Manchester serving around 150,000 patients.

Services mainly comprise mental health and learning disability provision for all ages, although the trust has also diversified into community services including district nursing.

Health visitors and district nurses regularly attend appointments on their own in patient’s homes, putting them at risk of assault. To help mitigate this issue, the trust has supplied staff with MySOS devices from Skyguard. These compact personal safety alarms are small enough to fit on a keychain and can be easily activated in situations where the user feels

9 December 2016
 December 9, 2016
Its important to be aware of personal safety when travelling at night

10 Safety Tips for Travelling to and From Work in the Dark

As the dull evenings draw in, many workers find themselves travelling to and from work in the dark. With the decrease in daylight, the opportunity for potential attackers rises significantly.

To help you stay safe on your journey we have compiled a list of our top ten recommendations on what to do, should you have to travel in the darkness.
Avoid Walking Alone
As the saying goes, there’s safety in numbers so if you know beforehand that you’ll be travelling home after dark, try and find a friend or trusted colleague who will be taking a similar route. People on their own are more at risk, so walking in groups if possible is strongly recommended.
Make Sure People Are Aware of Where You Are
Phone a friend before you set out to let them know your whereabouts and when you are due home. If you fail to arrive at your destination by the given time, someone can check then up on you to see if you are ok. Always make sure your phone is fully charged before setting

3 October 2016
 October 3, 2016

The Unsettling Truth About Stalking

What is Stalking?

Defining ‘stalking’ is often tricky because a stalker will use multiple methods to harass their victim. According to the National Stalking Helpline, stalking consists of any type of unwanted behaviour, such as regularly sending gifts/flowers, making malicious/unwanted communication, damaging property and physical or sexual assault. If the behaviour is persistent and causing fear and anxiety for the victim, then it is classed as stalking and must be stopped.
The following points reveal worrying truths about stalking and the effect it can have on victims:

Stalking is not limited to a delusional fan lurking in the shadow of a celebrity. In fact, 40% of people who contact a stalking helpline are being stalked by ex-partners and a further third are already acquainted with their stalker, be it a friend or somebody they’ve previously dated.
Anybody can become a victim of stalking. Dr Lorraine Sheridan and the Network for Surviving Stalking surveyed 2,292 stalking victims with an age range of 10 to 73. This included male and female victims, spread across the

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