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"Remove Uniform and Sneak Into the Crowd," Beseiged Chinese Doctors Advised

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In August we reported that rising violence in city hospitals had forced many Chinese doctors to carry weapons. In one instance, first covered by the Los Angeles Times, friends and relatives of a patient who died on the operating table marched on a hospital brandishing pitchforks. That’s right, just like in Frankenstein.

Recently, the popular medical website (Chinese only) issued a guide to help doctors fight back, China Whisper reports. The “Violence Prevention Guide” gathers advice from over 2,000 practitioners into a handy 31 bullet points.

Some personal favorites include: “Avoid staying alone in the room and having your back to the door.” “Have a good body and wear lightweight shoes.” And, if an attack does occur, “remove uniform and sneak into the crowd to avoid injury.”

Having a "good body" isn't bad advice when, per a study from the China Hospital Management Association, 73% of hospitals have been attacked by patients and their families, and 60% have seen mob violence.

Asked why people were bringing baseball bats into the doctor-patient relationship, 55.6% surveyed said it was simply prejudice against doctors. 23.5% said doctors didn’t communicate properly with patients, and 20.6% said treatment can't meet patient expectations.

Of course, there’s also the idea that unrest is the best way for malpractice victims to get compensation, thanks to China’s complicated bureaucracy.

Meanwhile in America, hospitals can be just as unsafe as their Chinese counterparts. According to the New York Post, last night, a gang-related shootout broke out in a Bronx hospital.

The shootout was the continuation of a fight earlier that evening between rival Bronx gangs. After one participant sought treatment, others followed him to the hospital and waited until he came out. They then started shooting. Two hospital employees were hit, but their injuries weren't serious. The main suspect remains at large.

As bad as that was, hospital violence remains a rarity in the US. Which is why, unlike doctors at Shanxia hospital in Shenzhen, China, American M.D.'s haven't yet started doing their rounds in army helmets:

Image courtesy of China Daily

(See also: Sticks, Cans of Mace Are Now Part of Doctors' Kits in China and China Headed for a "Class War"?)
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