Wash.– An Intensive Care Unit nurse is badly bruised after she says she was almost choked to death by her patient.
Now, Ashley Schade is sharing her experience to spread awareness about the rising rates of violence in hospitals.
Washington State Nurses Association Representative Jayson Dick says, “There’s so many things that nurses are responsible for, a lot of people don’t know what it looks like to be in the shoes of a nurse, but they’re there through the entire experience, they are the front line of healthcare.”
The front lines of healthcare that many nurses say need more protection.
Badly bruised, but not broken, Schade wrote a lengthy post about how she was almost killed last weekend and how more people need to pay attention to what’s happening behind hospital doors.
Washington State Nurses Association Representative Jayson Dick says, “Unfortunately it’s a huge issue, and the issue is growing. According to a study that the American Nurses Association put out, 1 in 4 nurses is affected by workplace violence.”
According to the American Nurses Association, the likelihood of health care workers being exposed to violence is higher than prison guards or police officers.
Washington State Nurses Association Representative Jayson Dick says, “There are absolutely ways to prevent these issues, from rising, better education, better staffing, better responses from the facilities. It should not be the status quo that nurses have to put their lives in jeopardy every time they go in to take care of their patients.”
Ashley’s patient now faces charges of assault in the second degree.
Court documents Action News obtained say Schade had been tending to her patient, 65-year-old Bruce Darling for three days, monitoring him for 12 and a half hours a day.
Court documents say Darling tried to remove his IV and Schade attempted to stop him.
That’s when she says he choked her.
Kadlec released a statement saying they support filing the charges against Darling.
They say while they take the threats seriously, “No matter the training offered or all the measures in place, situations can arise where caregivers who are providing care to patients may be in harm’s way because of a patient or a patient’s friend or family member.”
In recent weeks, Kadlec confirms there have been two caregivers physically harmed at Kadlec.
Kadlec says it is “engaged in reviewing and if necessary improving protocols to help deter future incidents.”
Richland Police confirmed Darling is still in the hospital at this time and they are in close contact with the hospital.
We’re told an arraignment date hasn’t been set yet for Darling.