12 ASH employees injured in March

April 2, 2013

ash2Atascadero State Hospital continues to have multiple employee injuries with aggressive patients injuring 12 employees in March. [Tribune]

Preliminary reports from ASH show that the assaults occurred from March 5 through the 28 and resulted in injuries including bruising, swelling and joint pain.

Most injuries in March occurred during one on one incidents between patients and employees, but twice patients managed to injure multiple employees simultaneously.

On March 5, three members of the nursing staff sustained minor injuries while attempting to stabilize a patient on a housing unit. On March 25, an aggressive patient tussled with a police officer, causing a minor injury, and then injured three nursing staff while they attempted to stabilize him.

Stabilization incidents occur when patients resist staff members who are trying to calm them and become violent instead.

Last November, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health fined ASH $27,000 for frequent patient assaults on employees. The Cal/OSHA report stated that an average of 10 patient caused injuries occurred each month in 2012 from January to September.


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Employees of ASH receive ONE DAY of training each year in self-defense. ONE DAY. No reinforcement, no regular practice. They are not trained like CMC guards, yet they have more isolated contact with these animals. Things will not change unless and until someone gets killed.

ASH is really “prison light” because of prison overcrowding. These animals should be in Max. Security. This has gone on for way too long and it’s despicable.

The inmates at ASH are insane and these kinds of attacks will never be stopped.

So long as we keep coddling the criminally insane, good, honest hardworking people at ASH and other institutions will be injured. I’m surprised this doesn’t happen literally every single day.

These inmates, patients whatever you want to call them, are C-R-A-Z-Y.

And they’re V-I-O-L-E-N-T, that’s why they are in there in the first place. Instead of trying to “cure” them, we should lock them up in a very deep hole and throw away the key.

The law ought to be that if you’re in a place like ASH and you attack the nurses or orderlies or psyche techs that are trying to help you, you go straight back to prison where the other inmates know how to deal with a crazy Mo-Fo like that.

Cal/OSHA is useless at ASH. They have no teeth, just a growl. Does anyone really care if the Government fines the Government? If there is to be positive change, Cal/OSHA must go after the individuals in charge; the ones who are at the controls. The previous Fines by Cal/OSHA obviously were not effective in solving anything. Hold the individuals personally responsible (financially/civil, and criminal) and you will see improvement. Otherwise it is just business as usual.