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People who assault medical personnel will not be eligible for general pardon — PM

By Maram Kayed - Dec 30,2018 - Last updated at Dec 30,2018

AMMAN — Citizens who have a record of assaulting medical personnel will not benefit from a general pardon, stated Prime Minister Omar Razzaz during the latest meeting with the heads of several associations.

The step comes after several medical figures, associations and ministry workers have asked for stricter laws dealing with cases of assault on hospital and emergency room personnel.

“We must put an end to this trend of attacking nurses and doctors. Harsher punishments must be given out,” said President of the Jordan Nurses and Midwives Council (JNMC) Khaled Rababaa in a report made available to The Jordan Times.

More than 20 cases of attacking medical personnel, specifically nurses, were recorded this year, according to JNMC statistics. However, Rababaa told The Jordan Times that the figure only includes the reported “numbers of physical assault. Of course verbal harassment cases are much more [numerous], and many of them go unreported”.

The latest assault was last week, when four people were arrested after reportedly attacking a medical doctor at the Prince Hamzah Hospital, fracturing his shoulder and arm, in addition to bruising other parts of his body.

“This violence in hospitals in not only inexcusable but also incredibly harmful. Appointments and surgeries are delayed, and chaos breaks out when an attack like that happens,” said JNMC board member Ahmed Horani.

He told The Jordan Times on Saturday that perpetrators of these acts “get off easy”, which is why these incidents are repeated. “It is normalised, and that is dangerous,” he added.

Rababaa, in the meeting with the PM, also requested that the nursing be classified as “a risk-filled profession”, which would increase the nurses’ insurance programmes and annual raises.

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