Employees at a Missouri hospital will now be equipped with their own personal panic buttons after attacks on front-line workers have tripled, according to authorities.
Between 300 and 400 staff working in the emergency department and inpatient hospital rooms at Cox Medical Center in Branson will wear the buttons on their badges, the hospital said. If they are in distress, they can push the button, which alerts security on hospital computers showing the employee’s exact location. The distress calls will also be displayed in the hospital’s nurse call system.
The safety button system is set to be implemented by the end of the year and comes amid a “spike” in assaults against employees, the hospital said. Between 2019 and 2020, Cox Medical Center has seen its total violent events increase from 94 to 162, total assaults increase from 40 to 123, total injuries jump from 17 to 78, and assaults leading to injury tick up from 42.5% to 63%, according to hospital data.
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