Monday, October 24 2016


Hospital security concerns add tension to doctors' jobs

Update: January, 27/2016 - 09:14
A doctor was attacked by a patient at the Viet Tiep Hospital in the northern Province of Hai Phong last October. — Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — In addition to the pressure of having to save patients' lives, emergency ward doctors also frequently face threats from aggressive patients and their relatives.

Last October, at the emergency ward in Quang Ngai General Hospital in central Quang Ngai Province, gangsters ran into the ward in an attempt to kill patients. Doctors were panic-stricken, and some medical machines for emergency operations broke down.

The same situation was reported at Thong Nhat General Hospital in the southern Dong Nai Province.

While doctors were giving emergency aid to a patient with serious stab wounds, a group of four young men equipped with scimitars ran into the hospital and looked for the patient with a motive of murder. They also verbally threatened doctors. The doctors only felt safe and were able to continue their work when the police arrived.

Pham Van Dung, Director of Thong Nhat General Hospital, said the hospital was located near densely populated areas and rented rooms. Hospital doctors often witness fights among residents resulting from arguments, drunkenness or physical assaults. In some cases, doctors were chased and threatened with demands for preferential services, raising feelings of insecurity among doctors and patients. Thong Nhat General Hospital has signed a contract with a security company and set up a hotline with police to promptly respond to violent cases.

However, the authorised forces feel powerless to solve urgent cases as the number of gangsters is on the rise. In addition, security forces are equipped only with basic self-defence equipment, Dung said.

Accustomed to being beaten by gangsters while on-duty, Cao Duc Chinh from the emergency ward of the Ha Noi-based Ha Dong General Hospital said emergency doctors must be on high alert for aggressive patients' acquaintances.

A doctor who declined to be named told the Suc Khoe Doi Song (Health and Life) newspaper that medical workers face other types of violence. For example, some patients become belligerent and demand better treatment methods.

The doctor said that during special occasions like Tet (Lunar New Year), drunken people who were unable to control themselves often had arguments and fights with each other. He said that his fears of being chased and beaten increase when Tet approaches. In an effort to curb the situation, the Health Ministry had collaborated with the Public Security Ministry to ensure safety and order in the health sector, in addition to working with provincial police to train security forces at hospitals. — VNS

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