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The nurse hostage incident at Delnor hospital was much worse than the press reported. Will we ever prioritize the safety of our front line healthcare folks?

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Delnor Nurse, PO Box 394 Sycamore IL, 60178


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55 Responses to “Nurse Lives Don’t Matter”

  1. Kinoons

    Working EMS I was twice shot at and once had a knife pulled on me in the back of the rig. In the hospital assault and battery by patients is not uncommon at all. This can be as simple as verbal abuse or as severe as physical battery. The last hospital I was a bedside nurse at made it very clear: if you hit a patient even in self defense you were terminated. Our employer gave us no ability to actually defend ourselves. Verbally abusive patients were to be coddled instead of ejected. We had classes to teach techniques to try and handle violent attacks without injuring the attacker but this can only go so far. If the attacker was a patient, frequently on a psych hold, they were to be gently restrained. Furthermore the local PD and DA have little stomach to peruse prosecution of these attacks, especially by those on a psych hold. We are constantly told if the patient is on a psych hold the charges will never stick. Until an absolute zero tolerance policy is in place, irrespective of the patient’s condition or complaint, this will not be solved. I don’t care if you have an active STEMI — become verbally or physically abusive you can get the F out.

    • Ruth Sonnenberg

      Agreed. I’m here to help provide care for you and I get that this may be the most disturbing and stressful moment of your life. I can handle a lot. But I won’t tolerate abuse of myself or my coworkers in any form.

      • Dawn Miesner Anderson


    • Deana Lessard

      I’m an ICU nurse. I was just verbally abused and almost physically abused (patient was restrained by her wrists but managed to get the call light in her grip to throw at me) by a psych patient 2 weeks ago, to the point of crying I was so upset. If it wasn’t for my tears, I would have had to deal with this patient the rest of my shift. I wanted to ignore her the rest of the shift which is not good but I didn’t want to endure her behaviors toward me anymore. Thankfully we had another nurse that my charge assigned her to after I had approached her with the situation, crying only after being asked if I could “stick it out”.

  2. Ruth Sonnenberg

    I’m a long time ER and ICU nurse. We deal with the most unstable situations day in and day out. I believe (correct me if I’m wrong, though) that it’s now a felony offense to assault a healthcare provider. Unfortunately, having worked with many providers who have been assaulted (not nearly to the degree as these two nurses however), the prevailing attitude seems to be that felony charges shouldn’t be entertained because someone inevitably throws out the “mental illness” thing and so the perpetrators of these assaults get off relatively easy, even if any charges are brought at all. It’s sickening. Many of my coworkers have declined to even make reports to law enforcement 1) because of previous reason, 2) we work in health 2.0 where we don’t have time to step away from our work and actually make a report and 3) what would it get us except nit-picked and scrutinized by other agencies and our own hospitals and told we must have done something wrong and not used our CPI (crisis prevention interventions) training as instructed. Really?!? For the record, assaults on healthcare providers aren’t typically made my inmates. I have only known one inmate to perpetrate an assault. Most of the time the aggressors are people who walk in for treatment off the street just like anyone else. Let that sink in. That’s the scariest part. Here’s the other thing: let’s not forget that the 2nd nurse was indeed brutalized beyond imagining, but she was second on scene. What about the first victim held at gun point, stripped, terrified, threatened, who now is likely suffering terrible guilt and PTSD for knowing that her teammate, likely her big-sister nurse, literally took her place. What about her suffering? How do either of these ladies return to their normal lives, their work places, their livelihood? How do either of them manage to mend their hearts and minds enough to maintain healthy relationships? This act of aggression is much farther reaching than many might first imagine because for nurses who are assaulted on the job, this is not only the trauma of assault (which is terrible in and of itself), it’s also a rending of their nature. Being a good nurse isn’t just what we do, it’s who we are. when we are attacked because of that very nature, it tears up the fiber of your being. This is inexcusable.

    • jtrn

      Depends on the state you practice as to assault on a healthcare worker being considered a felony…..I liveand practice in Massachusetts and it is only a misdemeanor, even assault with a deadly weapon….someone I know was attacked with a needle and if they had pressed charges (last I heard they had not) it would have only been a misdemeanor…..UNREAL….

    • Deb Scott

      I believe it is a felony to assault emergency response providers, but not hospital workers. This has been a conversation we have had a lot recently. It should be a federal law, but no one wants to fight the good fight, they would rather hide it under a rug.

    • Kinoons

      As noted it depends on the state as the the severity of the law. In NV it is a “gross misdemenior” unless you’re a specific type of offender such as an inmate for which it becomes an automatic felony.

    • Dawn Miesner Anderson

      Great post

    • Brandon Hunter

      It is a felony, but only if it’s an ER/ED worker. I know this because I worked in Behavioral Health and over the course of a two year period (2015-2016), we had 10+ concussion injuries alone. It was enough that OSHA conducted a thorough investigation on our Behavioral Health department and issued a Notice of Workplace Hazard (though the Hospital swept it under the rug and never put out that information to the employees).

      I suffered one of the worst of these incidents. A patient, who was not an inmate, but brought from a residential facility sucker punched me then stomped and kicked my head after I cracked my head on a table going down and was rendered unconscious. I was the only staff on the unit. In fact, we weren’t even worried about aggression from this patient as he had been there a while and it was the two that we were cautious about that jumped up to intervene and possibly saved my life. A note: my coworkers who weren’t on the unit weren’t slacking off, they were pulling meds, taking vitals, and wrapping up shift change when this happened; they were doing what their jobs required.

      Yes, I pressed charges. Also, I was told by the police that they had federal warrants (at least processing) but that the hospital had asked them not to speak to the guy until the state did, which came 3 months later. The day after that happened, he was discharged to the other side of the state and the police were never able to speak to him.

      I never pushed for follow up because 1) I was still on light duty (for 8 months) trying to move forward and recover from the concussion and PTSD, and 2) studying my ass off to obtain qualifications for a new career in Computer Programming (after getting my degree in Psych & Criminology and 4.5 years in the Mental Health field). Now, I’ve made that career change and I’m never looking back. However, my former coworkers and medical staff across the country deserve far better and I intend to advocate for that.

      One more thing, speaking of advocacy and bear with me on this because it won’t sound right at first… I DO NOT blame my attacker. Sure, he had a choice and he made the wrong one, but it’s our system that created the situation that bred this event and countless others like it. Without going into details, we’re talking about a person that was brought to us not because of a violent incident and then stripped of all his rights including being with family, placed behind a locked door for months, and was left with an understaffed unit crew (though not according to law or the hospital). It’s our mental health system as a whole that’s failing us, and I don’t just mean inpatient services, but in the community as well. People don’t have affordable mental health care or even easy access to it if they do (transportation and stigma barriers prevent this). Until we overhaul the system, this shit will continue to happen, regardless of the legal protections we give to hospital workers. Even if we increase staffing and beef up security in our hospitals, it’s still going to happen in the community. It’s a far more widespread problem than we are willing to admit and continuing to shove as many of those “problems” behind locked doors as we can is never going to solve it.

  3. Selenia Chartrand

    Keep talking. Keep sharing. This has gone on for far too long. It’s hard to feel valued and appreciated by an administration that does not stand up to “customers” that bully their nurses. There isn’t one ER nurse who hasn’t experienced or witnessed abuse to staff. I’ll forgive the swearing in this video b/c it makes me want to use the F word too! Thanks for speaking up for us Zdogg.

  4. Lynn Newnam

    I was punched and pulled to the floor by my hair by a patient. The patient also attacked a visitor in the hall. The hospital administration wrote up an incident report on the visitor attack and the police were called. I was told by administration I couldn’t file a complaint or even write an internal incident report about my own attack because I was an employee. I was told that it’s just part of the job and my own personal insurance was billed by the hospital for my exam.

    • Destiny Fay Herrmann-Rattner

      My husband is law enforcement and after my first assault we decided I would personally call. Since then our facility has become better but it still is far too lenient on this behavior. I am not sure where all of this entitlement and hostility arises but I will not allow someone to make me a victim.

    • Deb Scott

      That is absolutely horrible!! We are lucky to be able to write up our own patient safety reports for each incident, and we have the RIGHT to file charges against the patient for said assault, though we are aware nothing will happen. No administration has the right to tell you that you cannot file charges. That is immoral coming from an organization. I’m so sorry!

    • Tawny Nuesmeyer McGehee

      Lynn, this is an on the job injury and you should have filed an incident report. OSHA and the Labor Board would probably be interested in your hospital’s policy.

  5. Lori Lillie-Rutledge

    Shit, we can’t even get security that are allowed to have guns. What the fuck would happen if someone comes in armed? We’re fucked.

  6. Lori Lillie-Rutledge

    How do you even deal with this kind of abuse without nurses unions to fight administration?

    • Lisa TrainingToBeaSpy Messer

      Nurses unions won’t fight administration. They just stand by and watch.

  7. Nadine Ouellette

    My mother just a few weeks ago just up and quit her RN nurse job. She worked in the ER for years and before that was an EMT who went to college when I did to become an RN. She loved her job. for 30 plus years she was in CNA,EMT,RN. She has worked at this hospital for over 11 years. She worked her ass off and at 62 years old administration wanted to put two nurses in her spot. She is very fit and looks very young! As soon as they wanted her out administration started harassing her after 10 years of working at Altru she was written up multiple times. She even was written up for something as small as eating at the nurses station (while they were all eating there) She was harassed is the only way I can put it. NONE of the higher ups stepped in to say no this isn’t right. She has been hurt and verbally abused by patients and put up with it. Now they wanted her out so they just pushed her to quit. She also never took time off or called in sick. I wanted to cry my mother loved helping people and this is how she ends up leaving her career. She may find another job she said but nurses are younger now and disposable to the “administration” in hospitals.

    • Rosemary Martin

      The hospital where I worked would try to fire people who were reaching retirement age, you can work your ass off but to the bosses, the big bosses, you are only an employee that can be replaced. My daughter is a Nurse, I was an aide. Bless you all for caring for people.

  8. Shelley Anne Stover-Nelson

    I worked in the ER for many years, nurse lives are expendable. Policies currently in place do nothing, to protect the nurse. Too often we excuse atrocious behavior with mental illness and accept it. Too often though many strides have been made in healthcare to protect workers, the rights of the patient usurp those of the caretakers, privacy, mental illness, PTSD.

  9. Pamela

    I’ve said that to administration nurses are nothing more than a roll of toilet paper. When I was a brand new nurse, I had a retired nurse say to me “if you ever leave nursing, it won’t be because of your patients but because of management.” I’ve been in the field for 40 years and it has only gotten worse. I chose retirement last year and I don’t think I’ll be going back. PS when patients or visitors were being abusive or threatening bodily harm, I would tell them I didn’t give up my civil rights when I came through the door and neither did they; and that I would pursue it with all that I had. And yes you should file for each and every incident! of violence!!

  10. Karen Eriksen-Reynolds

    As a RT we had a long term vent patient that would grab us and talk around his trach saying horrible sexual things. We asked management If we had to treat him and we were told we had to care from him. One therapist with over 30 years experience yelled at the pt after he verbally brutalize a nurse. He was fired.

  11. Karen Eriksen-Reynolds

    Our security guards can’t even have mace at our hospital.

  12. LoriBakerCraig

    In South Carolina, it’s a misdemeanor to assault a nurse. Working in the ER, I’ve been hit, kicked, punched, pinched, groped, spit on and nearly had my thumb broken. I’m an educated professional, yet it’s “totally acceptable” to beat the crap out of me. No more. Thank you, ZDoggMD for advocating for nurses and for the victim of this terrible assault.

  13. Deb Scott

    I am an RN in a psych hospital who was just physically assaulted this past Wednesday (punched in the face and spit on). When I called law enforcement to file assault charges I was treated horribly. I was told “you work in a mental health hospital, you should expect to get hit”, “the states’s attorney isn’t going to do anything about this anyway”, “I have lots of other things to do in the county besides here taking this report”, etc. This is not my first, second, or even third time being assaulted in my years here, but is the first time filing charges, and I was floored at the response I got. I filed a formal complaint with his supervisor over this. We are supposed to be concerned with “blue lives matter”, but I have just witnessed how these same officers treat the general public, and I see firsthand why there is little regard for our law enforcement personnel. If there is this little regard, no professional courtesy, and NO compassion after a vicious assault, I now understand why there is little empathy towards what happens to them. I come from a military/law enforcement family, and cannot believe the lack of empathy received by my fellow nurses when this happens, as I was not the first nurse to be treated this way after an assault, just the most recent. I am our union representative, and am a sitting member of our workplace violence taskforce, so this will not be the end of this discussion, which has already been taken to our assistant administrator. This is extremely unacceptable behavior by the people who are supposed to protect the public. If it were them that had gotten assaulted, the person would be in jail, but they believe we have it coming because of where we work????

    • Laura Episcopo

      I am a travel agency nurse and I have worked at various hospitals throughout the U.S.. I have had patients threaten to “bash my head in if I didn’t move faster.” I have had patients threaten to shoot me and kill me. Tendons in my wrist have been damaged by a patient who grabbed my forearm and twisted it so hard, causing significant injury, pain and loss of work. However, recently in one hospital the staff nurses created such a hostile work environment that it was intolerable and totally miserable. While working the night shift, my car was parked at the hospital parking lot, only two rows from the main entrance at Fresno Heart and Surgical Hospital. My car window was shattered and personal belongings were stolen from my vehicle. When I notified the Fresno police department I was told that no police were able to come to investigate, because they were out investigating real crimes. I was told to go on-line to register my complaint/crime on the police department’s website instead of having an actual police investigation of the crime. Hospital surveillance footage would only be released if the police department would issue a subpoena. Hospital administration said nothing to me following the incident, however my contract was terminated shortly thereafter, without just cause or explanation provided.
      Nurses are victimized in many ways and we have no recourse but to suffer in silence. It is absolutely horrendous to hear about the brutal rape, physical assault and shooting of the courageous nurse who laid her own life on the line in order to protect her co-worker. Every nurse must pay attention to what is happening and take action to prevent further violence against nurses and doctors as well.

  14. Dalyrambles

    I worked at a private acute psychiatric hospital until recently (was terminated for being a whistleblower about poor staffing) and there is so much I could say about this topic. Unlike other hospital we had NO security. We were the security. We had to deal with the code greys, AWOL’S, and giving court ordered antipsychotics IM. I’ve seen staff punched, bit, choked, had their boobs and asses grabbed, I’ve been hit in the face had my glasses broken. We had patients that were murderers and rapists out on the floor with everyone else.

  15. InTheKnow

    I live in the area and spoke with nurses at Delnor, I know most of what happened and the lawsuit is absolutely accurate. The corrections officer is almost as much at fault as the inmate. He was grossly negligent and a coward. I wanted to clarify one thing. The media was not given the nurse’s name because she requested that the details NOT be released. She didn’t want the world to know she was raped. That information was not even released to hospital employees. In our area, this incident was widely reported and once the lawsuit was filed all of our networks shared the details. The hospital left inmate protocols to the discretion of the officers when inmates were being treated. That will no longer be the case. All safety protocols are being reviewed. When inmates are treated no one knows what they were incarcerated for to ensure the patient gets quality treatment. Delnor has served inmates for years, this never would have happened if the officer had not failed in his duty. I do not know who the officer was or any details about his employment history, so I can’t say if he was inexperienced or just negligent.

  16. Sarah Stein

    I’ve been assulted many times ranging from nipple twisting (when I was still a tech) to having my fingers broken. When my fingers were broken by a confused demented patient (known violent patient not properly staffed or restrained because you can’t restrain anyone), I reported it immediately. Was denied workers comp because it was my PRN job and I was not guarenteed hours, and I was barred from working my main job because I was on light duty and they did not have an obligation to accommodate. So I lost 6 weeks of work from 2 jobs. This happens all the time.

  17. Stephanie Haase

    Two decades ago…….before HCAPS……depending on the level of crime commented…You were handcuffed to the bed and several officers were responsible to monitoring depending on the level of offense.

  18. Mary O'malley

    I live in Montana, the MNA had a campaign titled “Your nurse wears combat boots” attempting to have the legislature pass a bill where it would be felony assault to assault a healthcare provider. The bill was tabled and never saw the light of day. When a member of the MNA asked one of the members of the committee about the bill, the legislator told MNA “nurses need to grow a pair.” The insinuation was as most nurses are female they need to toughen up. So sad. In our hospital we had an inmate escape when he was coming out of bathroom, unshackled, and took off running. The CO guarding him had a bad knee and couldn’t run after him. So STAFF ran after him through two units and grabbed him and brought him back. Six nurses holding him up over their heads like a sacrifice while security followed behind. But after hearing about this, I wonder if that was wise. I was the nurse for an inmate that had killed a cop running him down in the road. The doctor wanted me to give him a shower, as the patient asked for one. I thought are you crazy? You want me to get into a small, enclosed, wet, slippery space with a murderer who has nothing to lose? I refused, and the 2 cops guarding him agreed. Sometimes we just have to rise up and protect ourselves.

  19. Karla Baning

    Nurses represent 1% of the population of the United States. We are adult, non-criminal, eligible voters. There is absolutely no reason for nurses to be excluded from the decision making processes regarding healthcare policy and procedures. In fact, we should be running the show. 1 in every 40 voters in this country could be a nurse. That is a hell of a lot of power that we are NOT utilizing. We HAVE the power. The ANA has some 50 position statements on their website…50!!!! Why are we posting position statements on FRACKING and not wholeheartedly supporting nurse and patient safety? This is a nursing issue, but it is also a woman’s issue due to the fact the the majority of nurses are still female. The media and the public at large want us to be angelic, virginal, pure of heart healers, however, we are science majors with college degrees who take on the rigors of helping to maintain the dignity and health of individuals and communities, alleviating suffering wherever it occurs or is likely to occur. We must get behind Healthcare 3.0 and stop allowing ourselves to be treated as inventory. Without nurses, a hospital cannot function. The power is ours, we need only pick it up and use it.

    • Brenda Hall


  20. N. D.

    Assault of nurses is not only “acceptable” when committed by patients and family members, but doctors as well. I experienced first hand how administration treats situations where doctors abuse nursing staff…we truly don’t matter. I suffered some severe health issues related to the treatment I experienced and had to leave a job I loved.

  21. Stephanie Zalyski

    I was assaulted to the point I’ve had cervical and shoulder surgery. I also have 3 more inoperable herniated discs. I lost my ICU career that drove me to nursing. I now have a nursing desk job and have permanent injuries. I was treated like a liar from my company and their lawyer. I lost my insurance benifits and was in a severe depression for 2 years. Assaults leave physical, emotional and financial scars. It’s rather disgusting the treatment injured workers face.

  22. Emergiblog

    I worked in an ER where the security guards were not allowed to touch a patient. They were to monitor and document.

  23. Angela Schroeder Malone

    The CO screwed up. He got complacent and didn’t follow procedure with devastating results. That being said, I don’t know that we should calling him a coward and a little girl because he ran.
    1) First and foremost, we don’t have all the facts. When did he call? Why was there a delay in notification (if there was one)? Where did he go when he ran?
    2) Yes, his job was to protect the staff from this patient. However, this was probably the first time he was in a situation like this and he probably thought he would act differently if it occurred. Who among us can say with 100 percent certainty how we would respond in that situation?
    3) What are they told to do during training? Are they told to run to avoid being taken hostage?
    4) Lets face it, these folks aren’t exactly highly compensated nor do they work in a pleasant environment. It probably wasn’t the first choice of employment for most of them and I don’t know that every one of them will put their own lives on the line to be a hero.
    5) Ripping this guy apart on social media is exactly the kind of behavior we are trying to tell our kids not to engage in. Let the courts figure it out.

    Don’t misunderstand. I am not accusing the nurse of lying nor am I attempting to downplay what she went though. I am also not defending this guy. All I am saying is that acting like bullies on social media serves no purpose and is out of line.

  24. Amy Goodwin

    I worked for a Community Health clinic nearly 5 years, We saw everything walk through the door at one point or another. Per the administration we were not allowed to discharge patient’s unless they physically assaulted us. They removed the glass at the front desk, would not allow us to lock the door between the waiting room and the clinic or between BH and medical.

    The patients’ were to have full access to the clinic including our break room. I had more then one patient come up behind me at my desk without me knowing they were there. We were threatened daily, mostly due to denying pain medication, Had patient’s punch holes in the wall, break fire doors, threaten to come in and shoot the staff, wait till we left at night and run us down with their car, putting a bomb in the clinic, We dealt with daily verbal abuse, patient’s inappropriate comments etc.

    What was admins response. “Unless the patient physically assaults you we will not allow any patient to be discharged. We will send a strongly worded letter asking them to stop the inappropriate behavior,” This policy held even if law enforcement had to be called. In my 5 years at the clinic only 2 patients were discharged AND had to have restraining orders placed to keep them from coming back to the clinic.
    What were we told when we complained in regards to staff safety? To put it bluntly deal with it, once somethin really happens then we might fix it.

    Safety for ALL medical staff should be a priority for any clinic, hospital, assisted living, rehab etc. Thankfully we never had a major incident, but it shouldn’t take something like what happened in Delnor to bring something to light that has been a known issue for far to long.

  25. disqus_L2gNXMPSNY

    The problem I have with bad cop behavior is that any and all judgements are of course good ones when made by a cop. The nurse has to be understanding and take it and always questioned and blamed. People think that we are “angels” and so therefore have to be saints. I say fuck that

  26. Zarifa Clark-Hentz

    I heard when this story came out, and like anything in the media, I was patiently waiting for the whole truth to come out. This saddens me because no one should have to endure that hell, especially during the course of their work. I work in a large ER in Phoenix, which often gets inmate patients from the county jails and state prison. We are fortunate to have a Phoenix PD officer that works on shift around the clock, and I think that it has helped to alleviate some of the nonsense, and that is a small some! The security that was with the inmate is definitely at fault, I too have worked in prisons and I know that those shackles are to only come off if CPR is being performed because at some point you may have to defibrillate. In the ED inmates have to use the urinal and bedpan, when they are admitted, it is different, usually they would use the urinal but be allowed to use the commode. He should’ve been shackled at the feet, waist, and one wrist to the bed. They security has a responsibility to the public to keep him from harming someone and they failed miserably!! Allowing him to use the phone, FAIL!! Using their phone, FAIL!! The nurse being brutalized and raped, FAIL, FAIL, absolute FREAKIN FAIL!!!! (I’m trying to stop cursing). In Arizona it is not a felony to assault a healthcare worker, but we have had several nurses press charges against people that have committed crimes against them while providing care. This needs to stop, nurses get involved with legislation and the law making process, if it affects one if affects us all!!

  27. Eric Stott

    I’ve been a nurse for 28 years and frankly have lost track of how many times I’ve been hit, bitten, scratched and otherwise attacked. Sometimes the patients were confused and that’s understandable, but that was not always the case. Even though there are laws regarding physical violence against health care workers on the job, these incidents are rarely if ever prosecuted. As employees we are encouraged to fill out reports, but rarely ever hear back regarding the situation and when we do, it is something that WE have to do to alter the situation when it is not a situation where we have any control. This behavior needs to stop and it needs to start being prosecuted.

  28. Kazz

    if you don’t report these issues then there’s no paper trail. Many years ago I worked in a hospital where a teenager was shackled to the bed and the officer who was watching him released the shackles to let him go to the bathroom which he knew was against policy. The next thing we heard was the officer running down the hall yelling “call 911, call 911”. We looked at each other like wtf, you’re 911. The kid escaped out of a window and was later found at home.
    In another incident almost 2 years ago a patient threatened to hit me. This was an inner city hospital in a not so great neighborhood not that that’s an excuse or anything. Anyway, violence is a norm in this hospital and I told the patient that if she dare hit me I’m not calling security I’m calling 911. She did have a psych history and had the audacity to say that that will be her excuse. I said try it. She never bothered me again but she allegedly punched another nurse about two weeks later.
    Hospitals don’t care when nurses get hurt. As you said all they care about is the HCAP scores because that’s how they get reimbursed. Reading about violence in the workplace healthcare workers work in the second most violent environment only to law enforcement. That says a great deal.
    If you complain aka defend yourself you’re then the bad guy. How many people have to get hurt or die for there to be a serious change in policy to the benefit of all.
    There’s so much bs goes on in hospitals that if people knew it they would be scared shitless. Stay away from hospitals if you can and if you have you go there have someone with you and ask questions about everything. Stay safe.

  29. Yvonne Jarvis

    I am a NAC on Neuro at Hospital in Spokane, Wa. We deal with TBI and dementia patients that we have to restrain, we have been lucky enough when we have inmates there are 2 guards on duty and make sure they are shackled at all times. Men and women. I have had more problems with non inmate patients abusing me because of the brain injuries then inmates, but that is because we have had good guards. We had other incidents at oir hospital and others where civilians have come in threatening and one incident where an estranged husband came to hospital and shot his wife that was a nurse. Ended is Homicide/suicide. Tragic times for all.

  30. Peggy Keane

    This is true – We as nurses are ALWAYS in fear of retaliation from our employer because we are “EXPECTED” to overlook inappropriate and even violent behavior – We are questioned ” how could YOU have done things different” in alot of situations – you tell me what I could have done …. Very VERY sad – Thank you for being attention to nurse neglect and abuse because that is how WE feel ! Let me add , I love nursing , I love being a nurse – I currently have a job I LOVE but I have worked in facilities , behavior facilities , where we were expected to take abuse at all cost because ” We were being paid” to do so .

  31. Lori Barrell Carrier

    I believe the guard needs to be charged with neglect, and really should be charged with aiding attempted murder and sexual assault!

  32. Valerie Beeman Adams

    I am a CNA and I work in long term care. In the past year I have been punched, bit, slapped, kicked, ect. The worst is I had a resident twist my arm backwards and now I have nerve damage in my right arm. I’m healing but it is taking forever. This happens regularly and we are expected to sit there and let them do it to us. It sucks and I wish we could do more. It’s kind of like when we get in trouble for them falling but it’s their right to fall. WTF!

    • Valerie Beeman Adams

      Also if someone has showed repeat history of hurting the workers and possibly other residents we can’t restrain them because then it’s abuse.

  33. Johnny Ferry

    Out of 23 reasons I left the ED this was reason number 1. Who will take care of MY children if something happens to me?

  34. Venus Corriher

    I reposted this on my Facebook page. I must thank you for bringing this to light. However, I must also agree that not all CO’s are cowards like that one. I worked with some of the best Correctional Officers. I am from Texas and I have had the honor of working with Texas Officers. They absolutely protect healthcare workers in medical on site and in the hospital. Even when unconscious, they are by-the-book-professional. They are amazing. My heart goes out to these nurse’s and their families. I cannot express how this hurts my heart.

  35. Al Warnement

    9 year RN who cares for county offenders and IDOC offenders, retired Army 11B4VJ3, my opinion is; Eye for an eye. shoot the gutless loser bastard, rape him, convict him, Incarcerate him. Big Boy Rules.

  36. Elizabeth Fisher Smith

    I’m not a nurse, but I am a front line healthcare worker. I’m an EMT working in the NYC 911 system, and I honestly have lost count of the amount of times I’ve been assaulted on the job. I’ve been punched, kicked, spit on, scratched, bit (had to take HIV prophylaxis for that one), sexually assaulted, etc. My worst assault was actually in a hospital. While waiting for triage, a patient went crazy and choked me to the point of almost losing consciousness. I decided to press charges, but of course nothing ever happened. It’s not taken seriously. The ADA said,”we’re going to let her off if she goes to rehab.” Seriously? I still have nightmares about it, and it was almost 2 years ago. I have gone to counseling about it. Assault on EMTs and nurses is not taken seriously.

  37. E.W

    Reading all these comments I do not feel so alone. I was attacked by a patient this past February and am still not back to work!
    I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology and mental health, I was a CNA for about 5 years working in long term care and dementia care, and I have been an LPN for coming up on 5 years.
    Last February I was working on poor excuse for a fledgling dementia unit in a long term care facility. From 7:00pm- 7:30am I was the sole nurse had 4 CNAs until their shift change at 11pm, after 11 it was two CNAs sometimes one for…..get ready 40 advanced stage, undermedicated often agitated residents.
    There were many times admissions onto the unit were solely because no other unit in the facility could handle the behaviors. Oftentimes these patients were not appropriate for the unit, they belonged in an actual psychiatric unit equipped to handle their needs and properly adjust their medications. I voiced concerns several times but got nowhere.
    The particular patient who changed my life forever DID not belong on my unit from day 1. He had a very substantial documented psychiatric history and before coming to the facility his hospital records showed he assaulted several of the ED staff and was in restraints on a 1:1, he also had a history of domestic violence to his wife according to her report from the DC records at the hospital!
    This patient was there a week before I had him, there were several incidents from staff complaining he was physically abusive especially during care and the off going nurse told me to, “duck and cover.”
    He medication regimine was a joke prn Ativan 0.5 mg orally, when in all actuality he needed something much stronger like Haliperodol.
    He was combative on evening shift I notified my RN supervisor who was too busy with the rehabilitation unit to help me.
    As having experience with dementia care I’ve recounted this many times over there’s nothing differently I could’ve done. He became incredibly combative around 0000h. I had already administered his evening medication and went for the ativan which he spit out. Notified the doc, notified the RN supervisor requested her presence on the unit. I was denied a another ativan order, I was denied the ability to send him out to the ED for further evaluation. The RN supervisor coddled this patient and told me to keep an eye on him. He fell asleep, woke up at 1300 his bed alarm was going off, I had one CNA on the unit my other was on break.
    We ran down and he’s out of bed trying to get to another patient about to fall. We calm him down he’s swinging and swearing. He first scratched my wrist. We get him back to bed the RN can’t come at this point because she has an emergency.
    Moments later he begs me to be ambulated to his wheelchair, then he calms down for several minutes. Begins talking nicely, normal affect, the aggression is gone. He just tells me he’s really in need of getting in his chair he wants to be out of his room.
    At this point approximately 20 minutes of calm normal behavior has passed. My CNA and I oblige him because dementia can be a funny thing. So I go to help her transfer him to his wheelchair very steadily, calmly.
    He waits till were in mid transfer deadweights turns towards me and removes his hand from my CNA and violently starts punching me. I lose my balance and we fall onto his bed. I’m on my side at this point. He starts hitting me kicking me and then he goes to try and bite my face, before he makes contact my CNA pulls off the bed in an effort to protect me.
    In conclusion he wasn’t sent out, I filled out a report and the “supervisor” coddled him the rest of the shift. I have immediate radiating pain in my back but am not allowed to leave right away because “we just don’t have the staffing”
    9 months later…My current life. Not cleared for work, I herniated my L5-S1, I have radiculopathy down my right leg and daily severe pain. I was getting injections to help but my husband and I found out in July when I was scheduled for another injection that I was pregnant with our son.
    I’m currently right around 6 months, I can’t even enjoy it because my back is causing me too much pain. I’ve had several bouts of physical therapy, and my pain has been unmanaged because I don’t want a narcotic dependent newborn.
    I have lost the ability to work, I can’t take care properly of my home, my husband, my 7 year old. I’m 33 years old. I am going to require surgery after I deliver, a discectomy, probably also a laminectomy. My life is changed forever. I loved bedside care but I’ll probably never be able to handle it again. I walk with a limp and my right Achilles deep tendon reflex is now completely absent. Just went for a check up with my treating doctor and for some reason my left Achilles tendon wasn’t working and I joked,”oh maybe it’ s the baby lol!”….secretly hoping it is a fluke.
    I used to run, hike, fish kiyak…all gone.
    I have read so many stories about other nurses this has happened to. But where is our protection? Our rights? Violence against nurses is poo poo’ed! “Oh he’s combative but just watch out.” How many of us have been in these situations? And where is the management, where is the responsibility? We need a change now.
    There are too many of us being assaulted, seriously injured and for what? A good set of scores, patient satisfaction surveys… oh don’t say no to the patient, sorry were short staffed. It’s ridiculous, it’s no wonder nurses are leaving the profession in droves.