Overworked health workers face ridicule, harassment, and a wave of issues. and conspiracy theorists.
At a hospital in Branson, Missouri, more than 400 employees were provided with panic buttons for their identifiers after triple attacks on employees during the pandemic. According to the Associated Press, the number of attacks increased from 40 in 2019 to 123 in 2020. The 2021 figures have not been published. When pressed, panic buttons immediately alert the hospital to security and set up a tracking system to find the at-risk worker. In addition to panic buttons, hospitals are adding additional security cameras and using security personnel for a body camera, Jackie Gates, vice president of safety and preparedness for the Missouri Hospital Association, told The Associated Press. At a hospital in Springfield, Missouri, security dogs and panic buttons were added. Gatz noted that staff are also trained in stress reduction and physical protection techniques, such as placing a hospital bed between a nurse and a troubled person.
In Idaho, health facilities are also increasing security. Misinformation about the coronavirus has spread like wildfire in the region and patients are at war. "We've received reports of physical violence, verbal abuse, and requests for alternative treatment that have not been accepted or approved," Brian Whitlock, president of the Idaho Hospital Association, told the Associated Press. Idaho became safer after people clashed with staff about the need to wear the niqab and to protest outside the hospital. "I mean, a few weeks ago, we were protesting against masks and vaccinations so that patients who were dying inside Kuwait could see them," said Dr. Robert Scoggins, Kootenai's chief of health. "I think it was terrible." Just two weeks ago, the Idaho Department of Health activated the "Crisis of Care Standards" across the country amid a crushing wave of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
In Texas, health workers have also experienced increased hostility and violence. At a press conference last month, Jane McCarley, the chief medical officer of the Methodist health care system, said employees had been "cursed, yelled, threatened with physical harm and even stabbed." According to the Texas Tribune, McCarley spoke up just days after a serious altercation in a children's emergency room after a man refused to test his body temperature prior to his arrival. "It's increasing... Few people in every center are being abused that much. But it's definitely increasing day by day." In Colorado, Jefferson County health officials used cell phones, and vaccination clinics closed for the Labor Day holiday after medical staff were ridiculed, harassed, and harassed. At one clinic, the driver followed clinic signs around the vaccination tent. Elsewhere, an unidentified man threw an unidentified liquid at a public health nurse to inject vaccines. Other passers-by threw rubbish and insults at the workers. "I feel like Quaid killed our best angels," Dawn Comstock, Jefferson County's chief health officer, told the Denver Post at the time. "People are lying about these safe and effective vaccines. This has to stop."
When COVID deniers get violent, health workers receive panic buttons
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