Specialists from the Western Medical District of Almería gathered today at the gates of the Aguadulce Sur Medical Center in the municipality of Roquetas de Mar to condemn the physical attack suffered by a medical worker in the line of duty. Territorial Delegate of the Ministry of Health and Consumption in Almería Juan de la Cruz Belmonte Mena; the mayor of Roquetas de Mar, Gabriel Amat; and the manager of the Poniente Sanitary District, Enriqueta Quesada, attended a rally of support and solidarity with the attacker of a colleague.
The events took place last Monday afternoon at the Primary Health Care Emergency Service (SUAP) of the Aguadulce Sur Medical Center. The patient insulted and physically assaulted his doctor for refusing to take him to the hospital with an ambulance.. The doctor, who determined that the case did not require seriousness to sanction, was assisted by a nurse and had to treat his injuries. Subsequently, he filed a corresponding complaint.
Since the attack, the Poniente de Almería Medical District has provided all the necessary support to the injured professional, including protection and legal advice, as outlined in the Aggression Prevention and Care Plan for Andalusian Systemic Public Health Professionals.
The Territorial Health Delegate thanked everyone present for their support in fighting the attack on a health worker. “Here are all your companions. This is a problem for the whole society, and as the authority that these professionals are, exemplary workers, always aware of our health, they deserve our respect.” said.
Eight months in prison and 120 euros in compensation
A 57-year-old man arrested for assaulting a doctor at a medical center in Roquetas de Mar (Almería) received an eight-month prison sentence and a €100 fine for committing a crime against authority and another petty crime against injury.
The verdict was handed down by agreement between the prosecutor, the defense and the private prosecution in an expedited trial held on Tuesday in the court of first instance and instruction 5 Roquetas de Mar. Judicial sources told Europa Press that the man must also compensate the victim with 120 euros and cannot approach or communicate with him.
The judge after the hearing agreed to defer the sentence of imprisonment, since the defendant has no criminal record, but on the condition that he will incur civil liability and will not commit crimes for two years.
Seven attacks this year
In the first six months of 2023, the Andalusian Health Service recorded seven physical attacks. For the same period in 2022, there were 15 physical attacks. In total, 45 attacks (physical and verbal) were registered during these six months. During the same period in 2022, 61 attacks were registered. The month with the highest number of attacks was April, with 10 attacks in total (one physical). In June, five attacks were recorded (two physical).
There are currently about 5,000 security elements of various types in Almeria’s medical centers, among which: 366 video surveillance cameras, 633 consultation doorbells, 2,019 consultation telephones, 249 alternative exits or 1,159 terminals in consultation workstations with anti-panic software installed .
Aggression Prevention Plan
The Plan for Prevention and Attention against Aggression of the Department of Health and Consumption of the Andalusian Health Service (SAS) has a special program for accompanying an attacked specialist and a specialist with special training, who acts as a guide in the prevention of aggression and actions before them. This professional guide figure is designed to accompany, advise on procedures, and provide support to a worker affected by a seizure.
The plan also provides flexible and fast channels so that a person who is being bullied, verbally or physically, is not left alone moments after being attacked. In addition, psychological assistance is provided for as long as it is needed.
The Action Protocol strengthens safety measures in medical centers and safety conditions in the workplace. In addition, coordination between representatives of the territorial health police, health officials, directors of centers and provincial legal offices is improving, which will also be strengthened. It also includes legal advice for professionals who choose to convict.
The plan includes input from a working group set up by the Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs, which brought together social representatives, patient associations, lawyers from the Health Authority and the State Security Forces. The last measure that was taken in terms of prevention and attention to aggression was the recognition of medical personnel, leadership and services as a state authority. This recognition is included in Law 5/2023 of 7 June on the public service of Andalusia, which establishes: “Health workers, management and service personnel of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia, in the performance of their functions, in the Andalusian public health system will be considered a public authority and will enjoy the protection provided for such status by the current legislation.