Monday, July 27, 2015

State House to testify.for bil HB 1164

Well the day has come and gone. July 14,2015 1PM I was  at the State house to testify why I thought the Massachusetts law should be changed from a misdemeanor to a felony.
I had thought I would meet the team for Rep.Bruce Ayers there and maybe sit with me,( I laughed at myself ,because I remember how our patients in the ER would say I am meeting my Doctor in the ER)
I am new at all this politics, I feel there is a bill pending to help the nurses, healthcare workers and EMTS why isn't everyone excited about it? But maybe they are and they life doesn't allow for them to come into the State house.
After I emailed Sean Costello ,Rep Bruce Ayers team member ,he changed his schedule and we met in his office. He and Rep. Ayers had other meetings to attend to.So they couldn't go to the hearing.
I signed a paper to say I would speak and then Paula Murray R.N. also signed a paper to speak. I listened for 3.5 hours before my name was called to speak and Paula waited another hour. There was many bills being heard.
I was told if the bill didn't make it I might know in a week or two weeks or three weeks or more. But even if it didn't make it this round it isn't dead,   OMG clear as mud.
There are 32 states now that have a felony bill there is only 18 states left. So I think to myself  WHAT IS THE PROBLEM.WHY AM I HAVING SUCH A PROBLEM WITH SOMETHING TO ME MAKES SINCE.
I have many letters of support and I thank every organization that has written and every person that took time to write,email,or call their representative this isn't easy. To find the time in your day to call your representative isn't as easy as it sounds. So again a big thank you for everyone that has made that effort and if you know other people we could still need the support .
I haven't heard any news and today is 7-27-15.
Paula Murray telling her story about her assault!

I just want to say I watched the new program that is on TV called "Boston EMS" and I knew most of them. I am honored and feel privileged to have worked  with them when I was in the ER. Keep up the great work!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Challenges I have met in discussing BILL HB# 1164

Rep. Bruce Ayers introduced a bill and it is in the judiciary committee.
There doesn't seem a way to find out if there is a lot of votes. I think that would be interesting if I knew if I am working for something, no one wants.
I have met some challenges in trying to get people interested in this bill : Here are some examples on what I have been challenged with.

 example "but he is mentally ill, she\he really didn't mean to blacken your eye and knock out your front tooth, give him\her a break" Many people are said to be mentally ill and we as a nation should be grateful we have medication to help their illness. BUT if the same person  assaults a healthcare worker why shouldn't s/he get punished for it.  
 I am not writing about the person that is in crisis and psychotic. I am writing about the person that goes shopping, drives a car ,works etc. s/he knows right from wrong. That is a hugh difference. 

Another example I ran into is 'BUT HE WAS DRUNK" so now healthcare workers should not blame that person that just punched, spit and kicked a nurse because he drank to much? Lucky this person wasn't behind the wheel of a car and hit someone ,I wonder how that family would feel? I also feel if the person that is drunk hits a healthcare worker ,if s/he was at home would s/he abuse his family members? Maybe we should send out DCF to all the families ,just to check on them and make sure they aren't abused! Maybe we should think about any person that has been drinking and assaulting the healthcare workers ,maybe the next step could be a section # 35.

 Example: I am not going to support your bill because it is racist. Another way to get the black man or woman in trouble. "I don't think anyone should be abused but I am afraid the black person would get a heavier sentence than a white person."

This whole experience has widen my eyes. I feel that I am helping all healthcare workers and the EMT"S . BUT I also need to think about how others perceive this bill.
If people truly believe anyone that is diagnosed with a psych disorder should be able to do anything they want without any consequences.

The person that drinks to much and assaults healthcare workers and EMT's maybe s/he should also not be blamed and continue in their life style without consequences because like the psych. person he isn't thinking straight.

Now for the people that feel a black person would get a heavier sentence I am still perplexed on that. Could that really happen? What about the others that assault us? Would they get heavier sentences?

All of this is food for thought and makes me wonder why people feel it is acceptable for people to assault healthcare workers and EMT's with out any punishment.

I will leave this blog with a short story : I came into work and a nurse came over to me and told me how she was slapped in the face by one of the patients. She was  upset and I could see the red mark on her neck. I asked if she was seen by the MD and made out the incident reports. It was the end of the shift for her. When she was gone to finish up and give report to the next shift another nurse  grabbed my arm and said " I don't know why she is complaining about that slap ,she really wasn't hit that hard"!
Makes me wonder! The picture below was one of my co workers after a patient she had taken care of many times ,punch her in the face so hard ,she fell against some cabinets and injured her shoulder. This nurse was out of work for about 6 months and had to leave the job.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Can a change in the law work?

I have been working on trying to change the MA.state law about from a misdemeanor to a felony about assaulting health care workers.

 Our law in Ma. is "Whoever commits an assault or an assault and battery on an Emergency Medical technician an ambulance operator, an ambulance attendant or a health care provider as defined in section 1 of chapter 111,while the technician ,operator,attendant or provider is treating or transporting a person in the line of duty ,shall be punished by imprisonment in the house of correction for not less than 90 days nor more than 2 and one half years or by a fine of not less than $500.00 nor more than $5000.00 or both. This is what the State of Ma. Has ,it is a misdemeanor . Now if the State had a felony this is more serious. The person could go directly to prison. Have
Would that all it takes to stop the violence? A threat of prison?
Would that allow  the nurses the freedom to make out more incident reports?
Would the organization be more aware of the assaults the healthcare workers are receiving?
I am not sure of the answers to those questions,maybe someone could answer them for me.
Does your State have the felony law in place for assaulting a healthcare worker Does it work?

Sheila Wilson R.N.BSN MPH

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Stopping the violence can be stopped if we work together !!!!!!!!!!!

Time goes by so fast , that if we don't take a breath we will never be able to live in the moment.

I am getting all sorts of emails and phone calls from healthcare workers that have been assaulted.
The name calling, pushing ,shoving,biting ,spitting etc. is still going on. When will it stop?
That question has been around for years,The answer is
.If we as healthcare workers don't do anything about it and allow these people to assault us, the violence will go  on forever.
But if we work with our institution and keep at it ,it can be stopped.

I can hear you say ( because I have been there)

1. IF I complain about it I could lose my job.
 BUT if you don't complain about it you could lose your life or be injured enough that you can't work at all.

2.The patient didn't really mean it, s\he was really intoxicated.
 What does this person do to the family when s\he is drunk. Does being drunk excuse the behavior? What if this person was driving while drunk and hit and killed someone is that alright?????

3. These are just two examples that I hear us say to frequently. We need to put on our professional hats and make a stand.

In the ENA position statement  it is written:

Health care organizations have a responsibility to provide a safe and secure environment for their employees and the public.

Band together and help the organization  keep you safe ! Make noise, don't allow one more person to hurt you.

Happy  New Year......

Sheila Wilson R.N.BSN MPH