By John Ensor •
Published: 22 Aug 2023 • 13:39
Photo of the Malaga Regional hospital medical team.
Following a surge of violence against healthcare professionals the medical community in Malaga is taking a stand against this alarming trend.
On Tuesday, August 22, a demonstration was held in front of the Regional Hospital in Malaga, called by the Medical Union of Malaga (SMM), according to Malaga Hoy. The protest was in response to the latest aggression, where two men threatened to kill a doctor in the emergency room of the hospital.
It seems there is hardly a week goes by without aggressive acts against healthcare workers, the professionals lamented. They have decided to make the problem more widely known by protesting every time there is a physical or verbal attack, usually behind a banner that reads: ‘Against aggressions, zero-tolerance.’
The latest incident occurred when two men threatened a doctor while one was being treated for a haemorrhage caused by punching glass. It was the fifth assault in a week, and both men were arrested. The problem arose because one of the men demanded to be present during treatment, but the doctor told him he had to remain in the waiting room, ‘as stipulated.’ It was then that the man threatened to kill the doctor.
The SMM is demanding more control at hospital entrances, guards in all health centres, and an alert in the digital history of patients involved in conflicts. They also call for an increase in video surveillance cameras, which currently exist only at entrances and not in all centres. The SMM wants them installed in all and also inside buildings, in common areas like waiting rooms.
The union has denounced ‘the alarming upward trend in assaults.’ Compared to the 185 recorded in the province in public health in 2020 (an atypical year due to the pandemic) and the 187 in 2021, there were 268 in 2022. This represents an increase of 43 per cent over the previous year.
The medical community in Malaga is clearly fed up with the violence and is taking a stand to protect its members. With a 43 per cent increase in assaults in just one year, the question remains: What will it take to ensure the safety of those who are there to heal?
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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