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NHS: Crimes of Violence

Question for Department of Health

UIN 107280, tabled on 11 October 2017

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what information (a) his Department, (b) NHS England and (c) arms-length bodies collect on the number of reported physical assaults on NHS staff.

Answered on

18 October 2017

The NHS Staff Survey is used by the Department, NHS England and arm’s-length bodies to collect information on the percentage of staff experiencing physical violence from patients, relatives or the public in the last 12 months, the percentage of staff experiencing physical violence from staff in the last 12 months and the percentage of staff/colleagues reporting their most recent experience of violence.

Working with their security staff, the Police and Crown Prosecution Service, employers are responsible for reducing the likelihood of staff being attacked and taking appropriate action against those assaulting their staff. Trusts can use the NHS Staff Survey to benchmark progress against their peers and help them review their plans for tackling violence against their staff.

In 2016 (the latest NHS Staff Survey data available), 15% of staff reported they experienced physical violence from patients, relatives or members of the public in the last 12 months, a proportion which has remained static since 2012. In contrast, nearly all staff who participated in the survey reported that they have never experienced violence from a colleague (98%) or their manager (99%) in the last 12 months.

From 2012 - 2016, the NHS Staff Survey has shown:

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

Percentage of staff experiencing physical violence from patients, relatives or the public in the last 12 months

14.9%

14.9%

14.6%

14.8%

14.9%

Percentage of staff experiencing physical violence from staff in the last 12 months

2.7%

2.7%

2.7%

2.0%

2.0%

Of those experiencing physical violence, the percentage of them or their colleagues reporting the incident has remained broadly similar since 2012

73.8%

72.6%

72.3%

71.6%

72.0%

Answered by

Department of Health and Social Care
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