Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Children's Hospital Oakland Plagued by Gun Violence

By Rachel Swan
Wed, Feb 23, 2011 at 12:54 PM

A spate of violent incidents — including a hostage crisis — led Cal-OSHA (the state's Division of Occupational Safety and Health) to fine Children's Hospital Oakland for not adequately protecting its employees, SFist reports. In July, a 49-year-old man crept into the building and held a registered nurse and ward clerk at gunpoint. Police came before he had the chance to hurt anyone, but the episode still caused a lot of apprehension in the hospital, which is located near a fairly rough part of North Oakland (just blocks away from the apartment complex where a man was caught shooting at police officers two weeks ago). Tensions mounted in October, when nurses had to treat a gunshot victim who was dropped off in front of the hospital. That happened shortly after registered nurses ended a three-day strike over health care cuts in their contracts, according to today's Chron . While hospital staff still debate over whether these two incidents constitute a veritable trend, it's clear that Children's Hospital is highly affected by gun violence in the surrounding area. Seventy-seven out of the 156,289 emergency room patients treated in the last three years were victims of gunshot wounds, the Chron reports. Cal-OSHA certainly sees cause for consternation. It fined the hospital $10,350 for a whole list of citations.

Update: Thursday, Feb. 24, 10:29 a.m.: Apparently, the union representative who made the complaint to Cal-OSHA was one of our favorite San Francisco comedians, Nato Green.

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