By: Kyle James | 10-05-2018 | News
Photo credit: Emma Brancatisano | Ten Daily

Australia - Hospital Shootings Highlight Need For Medical Staff Security

Liberals and Democrats love to point the finger at Australia as the epitome of success when it comes to banning assault rifles and the right to defend yourself. They love to point out how the country hasn't had a mass shooting since the government's firearm buyback and subsequent ban on firearms which was prompted by the 1996 Port Arthur massacre. The reality is that it is still legal to own certain types of firearms in Australia, such as for hunting purposes, but that strict and overbearing firearm legislature doesn't stop criminals.

The country is currently facing a new dilemma posed by a bizarre attack after a 39-year-old parked his car in the ambulance bay of the Nepean Hospital in Penrith. The man then told the staff that his car held a bomb inside and he brandished several knives. It didn't take long for a police officer to fire at the man when he began approaching them. A secretary of the Health Service Union said the man who threatened staff and was shot by police could be a symbol of the state's health system is at a "crisis point".

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">A tremendous thank you to all our staff who performed admirably under challenging circumstances today. I witnessed the largest of team efforts and am both humbled and proud. Thank you to our patients for their understanding and patience <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; General Manager Nepean Hospital (@NepeanGM) <a href="">October 4, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Related coverage: <a href="">Australia - Police Shoot Sydney Hospital Knifer Who Claimed To ‘Have A Bomb’ (Video)</a>

A similar attack took place at the same hospital in 2016 when a man shot a police officer and a hospital security guard. That man had grabbed the officer's gun during the scuffle. It seems that since then, the number of troubling attacks targeting hospital staff and paramedics nationwide. "New South Wales hospitals and the security within them is at crisis point," the spokesman said. "It's now time for the Berejiklian government to stand up and say health security is a prime issue that needs to be dealt with."

So what is the solution to this increase in aggression toward hospital staff? Well, the HSU is asking for their security guards to be deputized and given "special constable powers". Another incident saw a 54-year-old man tasered and shot in the waiting room of the front area of the emergency department. That man allegedly threatened a security guard before he was shot by officers using both a taser and a firearm.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Nepean Hospital General Manager Brett Williams speaks with media after ED shooting. <a href="">@abcsydney</a> <a href="">@abcnews</a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Jonathan Hair (@JonathanHair) <a href="">October 4, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Assistant Commissioner Mark Jones described the man saying he was "acting in an erratic manner" and was holding at least two knives. Police have found a note that indicated a possible explosive device inside the suspect's vehicle. The note prompted several of the hospital's floors to be evacuated. After a thorough search by the bomb squad, the personnel was later allowed to return to the hospital.

The hospital spokesman said there was a "total lack of communication" during the most recent attack. "People were wondering what was going on … it was a calamity," he continued. The security staff was "clearly shaken up" and even the other staff were considering not returning to work due to the anxiety caused by the incident. "One of their colleagues was shot in the leg two-and-a-half years ago. This is Groundhog Day they don't want to revisit," he said.

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The lack of security at hospitals is a concerning one considering the amount of money a hospital costs, how many lives are inside at a given time, and the personal nature of having a loved one injured or at the hospital for any reason. One issue that severely affected Dr. Michael Wong, a brain and spine surgeon, was when he was attacked by a man with a knife as he walked to work at the Western Hospital in Footscray in 2014.

Wong says that people with mental issues are allowed to simply walk free and wander the street into wards of sick people. "That's how it was designed back in the day in England, but that model can't be applied to this day and age. In a ward, they need doors with a swipe card so strangers can't walk in. You have that for your office, so why not in a hospital where sick patients are more vulnerable?" Wong said.

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<span style="margin-top:15px;rgba(42,51,6,0.7);font-size:12px;">Dr. Wong</span>

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Twitter: #Australia #NepeanHospital #Penrith #Stabbing #Shooting #Crisis

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1 Comment/s
Anonymous No. 38711 2018-10-05 : 12:05

How is this possible?

Australia cracked down on firearms.

It is next to impossible to have a firearm in Australia?

Are we seeing another example Gun Laws only keep CITIZENS Unarmed, because Criminals by definition do not follow laws?

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