Friday, December 3

Problems with prior appointments and face-to-face care lead to an increase in violent incidents against public employees

The General Union of Workers (UGT) sounded the alarm a few days ago that the situation was beginning to get out of control in the offices of the General State Administration (AGE) and that is, a year and a half after the end of the confinement At home due to the COVID-19 pandemic and with the prior appointment established in practically all public services, it seems that some citizens are beginning to lose patience, which in some cases has ended up generating attacks of anger against public employees.

Overload, delays in appointments and pathologies without assistance: the pandemic accentuates the shortcomings of Primary Care due to lack of personnel

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Thus, the person in charge of Trade Union Action in Cantabria, Carmen Ruiz, reports that the workers have been suffering “verbal aggressiveness” frequently for months from some users that, in addition, has been being “justified” by officials and security personnel. . “They are assuming it as something normal and typical of the moment,” admits the union member. However, the alarms have jumped when there were two cases in just one week in which the violence was more than verbal.

The first of the victims was a security member, who was physically attacked and, in the second case, a citizen forcibly entered another office where there was no security. In both situations, as Ruiz reveals, “it was necessary” to call in the State Security Forces.

“From the UGT Trade Union Section we believe that the tension has grown a lot. People, pressed by their needs, go to the centers and want quick attention that they do not get and pay for it with the security personnel, and if this does not exist, with the official himself “, declares Ruiz.

In this way, and despite the fact that before the pandemic hardly any cases of violence were reported, it seems that the appointment system is the “culprit”, but not so much because of the system itself, but because of its ineffectiveness “which has worsened public service “. “The workforce has been gradually decreasing since 2008, and the loss of personnel is significant, so the officials are overwhelmed. So, people call to make an appointment and not all of them are answered, which creates tension and anger. In addition, the The digital gap means that many groups, which are usually the most needy, are left out of this mode of access, “says the representative of Acción Sindical de UGT in Cantabria.

For these reasons, and in anticipation that the situation will not change soon, the UGT delegates have decided to meet with those responsible for these centers of the General State Administration in the autonomous community to “request the necessary measures” to stop a possible wave of violence. “The physical and mental integrity of the personnel must be safeguarded,” he indicated in statements to

Likewise, it should be remembered that these organizations, such as Social Security, Finance, Traffic or Labor Inspection, among others, should adhere to the Protocol of External Violence at Work, but from the union they denounce that it is not working with the expected efficiency: ” If this growing trend continues, the appropriate preventive measures will have to be taken before major damage has to be regretted, “concludes Ruiz.

Healthcare, one of the sectors that suffers the most attacks

Along the same lines and within public employees, one of the sectors that suffers the most from physical and verbal attacks is the health sector. Thus, the National Observatory of Attacks on Nurses of the General Nursing Council (CGE) registered in 2020 a total of four attacks on nurses in Cantabria, that is, one less than the previous year. However, in Spain, over the past year and despite confinement due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there were 185 more attacks on nurses than the previous year, accounting for a total of 1,657 attacks.

On the other hand, attacks on doctors in Cantabria also fell in 2020, but in this case more than 30% compared to the previous year. In total, the College of Physicians of Cantabria received 16 complaints of assaults by its members, of which more than half were suffered by men (56.3%), and the rest by women (43.8%).

This is included in the data made public this Friday by the National Observatory of Attacks on Physicians of the Collegiate Medical Organization (WTO) according to which, at the national level, attacks on collegiate physicians in Spain were reduced by 35% in 2020 , compared to 2019. Even so, Cantabria is the community with the highest number of reports of assaults per thousand doctors (4.22 / 1000), a figure that, according to the College of Physicians of Cantabria, highlights the “closeness” of the organization with its members.

To resolve this issue, the Collegiate Nursing Organization has decided to launch a project together with the State Security Forces and Bodies in which they will make face-to-face visits to health centers. The objective of this initiative called IPNS21 is to establish a closer and personal relationship with health professionals on the front line and thus know the real problems they are experiencing.

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