Wigan's NHS Trust speaks out after staff abused for carrying out Covid-19 checks at site entrances

Wigan’s NHS Trust has condemned a handful of patients who have abused staff carrying out Covid checks at its hospital entrances.

Wednesday, 10th March 2021, 9:31 am

WWL (Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh) staff have faced verbal attacks and confrontational behaviour from aggressive patients, while distributing face masks and carrying out routine coronavirus safety checks at hospital entrances.

Today, security bosses have called the aggressive behaviour “deeply shocking and upsetting”, and urged hospital visitors to remember that NHS staff are there to help them stay safe.

As well as being a distressing situation for NHS key workers to face, the time being taken to abuse hospital staff has been causing backlogs of visitors waiting patiently to enter the hospital.

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Wigan's NHS Trust speaks out after staff abused for carrying out Covid-19 checks at site entrances

Jason Carr, Head of Security at WWL, said: “It’s deeply shocking and upsetting that members of staff distributing face masks at the entrances to our buildings have reported people being aggressive and abusive towards them, something nobody should have to face when carrying out their duties.

“It’s of high importance that all of our buildings at WWL are Covid-19 secure and that our patients, public and staff can feel safe in the knowledge that we are following infection, prevention and control measures, this is why we ask everyone who enters our sites to wear a surgical facemask provided, as opposed to a fabric face mask or covering.”

Mr Carr added:“Your safety is paramount to our staff members, which is why we’re asking for their safety to be just as important to you. Please help us to help you.”

Aggression towards NHS staff has been widely reported across the UK since the start of the pandemic.

Last year, England’s chief nursing officer Ruth May called for the public to show greater respect for frontline staff, following reports of abuse and violence towards them, such as being spat at and assaulted in the days after the first lockdown was imposed last March.

She said the public should respect and listen to NHS staff “because you may be needing them very soon.”

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