Physical assaults top five thousand

The Northern Trust recorded more than 5,000 (5,293) physical assaults over four years, it has been revealed.

Figures released also provide a detailed breakdown of where the incidents took place.

More than two thousand (2,039) physical assaults were recorded at Holywell Hospital with 700 of these incidents (701) on clients/patients/visitors and over one thousand (1,338) on members of staff. There were also over four hundred assaults (449) at Antrim Area hospital.

In the past year at the Causeway Hospital, there were 41 physical assaults on staff as well as 23 incidences of verbal assaults to staff. Three assaults on client/patient, visitors were noted and two verbal in the same category.

The Northern Trust said it employed security personnel to “protect staff and patients” and that as employers it would not “tolerate abuse of or attacks on our staff.”

Across the province, health trusts logged more than 30,000 incidents of physical assault on staff, patients and members of the public at Northern Ireland’s care settings over the past four years.

Since 2009 the five health and social care trusts figures show that more than 20,000 physical assaults were on members of staff while 10,000 incidents were directed at patients, clients, residents or visitors.

Courts locally deal robustly with offenders.