More than 100 assaults on ambulance staff

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SOUTH East Coast Ambulance Service staff reported more than 100 physical assaults in the past year.

The total number of reported assaults totals 113 and is just two more than last year, but of these, 91 didn’t involve medical factors – an increase of 26 compared to 2012-13.

Nine individuals were prosecuted in the year – a number the trust says it is committed to increasing in future.

Steve Robotham, security manager for the ambulance service, which assists patients in West Sussex, said: ‘Just one assault against our staff is one too many and ambulance crews must never be made to feel that violence or the threat of violence is just a part of their jobs.

‘We encourage staff to report and take action against anyone who physically attacks or verbally abuses them.

‘Of course the huge majority of patients and members of the public know that this kind of behaviour is deplorable and would never think of hurting someone who is there to save lives and help and serve the community.

‘Now all our vehicles are fitted with CCTV, if an assault takes place in the ambulance, we will have better evidence to pass on to police to take forward a prosecution.’