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Patient Attacks Nurse At Alta Bates Medical Center In Oakland

OAKLAND (KCBS) – A recent attack on a staff member at an East Bay hospital has nurses concerned about their safety.

The incident occurred early Friday morning at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center in Oakland.

Nurses at the facility said one of their colleagues was attacked and beaten about the head by a patient she was trying to help. Nurses claim this is part of an ongoing pattern and there is not enough staff or security protocols in place.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

Nurse Charles Maltazahn was on the same floor and witnessed what happened.

“I was in a patient’s room doing patient care and charting. I heard some screaming,” he said. “The screaming got louder. I went to the room and I observed a patient jumping back into bed after he had choked and hit a nurse.”

The nurse had a reddened ear and swollen head after the attack. She was also sad to be suffering from psychological trauma.

Nurses said they plan to file a claim with the Division of Occupational Safety and Health or Cal/OSHA over the incident.

In an email, officials with Alta Bates Summit Medical Center said that nurses and security staff get extensive training on the appropriate way to respond to workplace violence and that they have begun a thorough investigation of the incident.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

  • Concerned

    How much more proof is needed. We need more more nurses NOT cutbacks. I hope the nurse is ok. It’s going to take her some time, if at all, to get over the trauma of this.

    • Brocolli Beef

      Current Nurse to patient ratios are more than adequate. This is a security issue so please don’t try to advocate wasting money by hiring additional RN staff that is already well compensated.

  • Johnson

    I have wanted to beat a nurse myself…good thing for her I have more control than this person. But she never set foot in my room again!
    When a patient says no or stop, that is what it means! We may not be animals but humans will bite those trying to help when they are wounded, mentally or physically.
    I am sick and tired about anybody whining about their jobs duties etc. when they literally asked for those responsibilities. I will follow this story with great interest to see what really happened.

  • Freeman

    AND this guy didn’t get arrested?!

  • mwkerlagnaro

    @Johnson: Please Pleas Please!!! Be sure to share your feelings on this the next time you are in a hospital and would like your oxygen or pain meds or wounds tended to. I’m sure all those Millionaire nurses will just Leap at the chance to tend to your needs. Jackhole!

  • Anonyous

    Um, how do more nurses make this not happen? You’re not going to have two nurses per room. This is a fact of life – some patients are violent. They should then be arrested and sent to the mental health ward.

  • David Young

    The one thing I noticed after moving here to Oakland from Iowa city. Is just how rude people are sometimes at health care facility’s. At one facility. I saw patents making sexual advances on the staff and other stuff. That I found really disturbing. And worse. The staff just seemed to put up with it. To the point I darn nearly just walked out of the waiting room. Now please note. I am not a fan of hospitals at all. But there could sure be a little more civility. On all sides. I hope that poor nurse fully recovers. And for the person who assaulted her? He needs jail time. Not mental ward time.

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