NEWTON, Mass. — Five people, including four nurses were recently injured in a single incident involving a patient at one of Newton-Wellesley Hospital’s behavioral health units.
In a statement, Newton Wellesley Hospital confirmed to Boston 25 News, that on July 24, the incident involved a physical altercation between a patient and five staffers.
The hospital said four of the five staffers were later treated and released from Newton Wellesley’s emergency room.
According to a criminal complaint filed by one of the injured nurses, the incident began at about 1 p.m.
The nurse told police she witnessed the patient was upset with a counselor and tried to swing his arm in an attempt to punch him in the face.
Other nurses, she said, tried to calm him down. Instead, in just a matter of seconds, the nurse said, the patient became physical, with his arms and legs flailing. The nurse told Newton police she was one of the people injured in the incident.
In its statement, Newton-Wellesley Hospital said the patient given appropriate supportive care and treatment.
No charges have yet been filed, but Boston 25 News learned that Newton Police are sending the case to a Newton District Court judge magistrate who will decide if charges should move forward.
Newton-Wellesley Hospital said in a statement that it has conducted its own thorough investigation of the incident and has reported it to the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health.
The facts of this case are revealed just a week a patient at Lowell General Hospital is accused of hitting a nurse in the back of her head with a fire extinguisher.
Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan told Boston 25 News she is concerned about rising cases of violence against nurses and other health care professionals.
Ryan is supporting legislation at the State House aimed at curbing workplace violence.
“The statistics are very high. Over 70 percent of nurses in the emergency room report that they’ve been assaulted on the job. This level of violence is just something we can’t tolerate, we have to address it,” she said.
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