Cheshire and Merseyside deal signed to protect NHS staff

11/11/2014

A new agreement to help protect nurses, doctors, ambulance crews and other NHS staff from assault and abuse in Cheshire and Merseyside has been signed (10th November 2014).

The Service Level Agreement (SLA) between the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) Mersey-Cheshire and NHS Protect commits both bodies to working closely together to ensure that people who attack NHS staff are prosecuted, wherever appropriate.

It helps implement the national joint working agreement between the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), the CPS and NHS Protect.

The Mersey-Cheshire SLA aims to strengthen the prosecution process, recognising that there is a strong public interest in prosecuting those who assault NHS staff or commit other offences that disrupt the provision of NHS services to the public.

John Mytton, North West Area Security Management Specialist for NHS Protect, said today: "CPS Mersey-Cheshire and NHS Protect have worked hard to reach this point, with both of the CPS regions in the North West now covered by this agreement.

"We will continue to support health bodies to ensure that all incidents of violence and aggression against staff are addressed and appropriate sanctions are brought wherever possible.

"This will improve the confidence and wellbeing of those who work in the national health service and their patients."

Claire Lindley, Chief Crown Prosecutor for Mersey-Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service, said: "No NHS worker should have to do their job in fear of being assaulted.

"Some staff may feel that these assaults come as part of their work and they have to put up with them. This is not the case.

"We also know that some staff mistakenly believe that nothing will be done if they report the assaults. This is also not the case.

"This agreement shows the commitment of the NHS and the Crown Prosecution Service to make sure that the people who commit these assaults are brought to justice.

"We hope it gives people the confidence to report incidents and that offenders get the message - you will be caught and made to face the consequences."