Patient assaults staff; CAMH fined $80,000

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto  has been fined $80,000 following a workplace violence incident where staff members were physically assaulted by a patient.

On January 14, 2014 a registered practical nurse performing rounds on the night shift was attacked from behind by a patient. This patient had a history of violence and had not been following the prescribed medication plan. The first assault occurred in the hallway of a unit at the Queen Street facility and continued at a second location near the nursing station.  A co-worker intervened in the assault and was also injured.

Both workers suffered physical and psychological injuries.

The patient was charged by the Toronto Police Services and convicted for this assault.

CAMH pleaded guilty to failing to develop, establish and put into effect measures and procedures including safe work practices to protect workers in the circumstances on the night shift from workplace violence or the risk thereof posed by a patient as is required by Section 8 of the Health Care and Residential Facilities Regulation (Regulation 67/93) and Section 25(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

The fine was imposed by Justice of the Peace Robert G. Bigelow, Provincial Offences Court/Ontario Court of Justice. In addition to the fine, the court imposed a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.- CINEWS

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