Reported assaults against frontline NHS staff have risen by 6% in the last year according to new figures released by NHS Protect.
The statistics, collated from 341 health bodies across England show a rise of total reported assaults from 59,744 in 2011/12 to 63,199 in 2012/13 – an increase of 5.8%. What’s more, the figures show a dramatic 16% increase in the number of criminal sanctions taken in the wake of reported attacks. However, NHS Protect state that employers and staff can do more to bring perpetrators to prosecution.
The figures add up to an assault rate of 2.1% of staff in the acute sector, 3.9% in ambulance services, and over one in five (21%) in mental health services. Alarmingly, the figures equate to more than 173 physical assaults on NHS workers every day.
NHS Protect urges health bodies to take advantage of the joint working agreement with the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Crown Prosecution Service and use existing guidance to pursue local arrangements building on this national agreement to