A&E nurses are increasingly dealing with both the victims and perpetrators of crime, a UK study has confirmed.
Rates of emergency admissions for assault have risen 30% over four years in England, according to a study published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
The researchers, from John Moores University in Liverpool, analysed the number of A&E admissions to hospitals from 2002 to 2006, during which time more than 120,000 people were admitted as an emergency as a direct result of violence.
They found admissions for assault rose from 25,789 in 2002-2003 to 33,940 in 2005-2006. Such admissions were highest at weekends with around one in five of the total admitted over this period.
Additionally, higher rates of admission for all ages were also seen among those living in areas of deprivation. Efforts to tackle health problems in poor communities will fail unless such violence is addressed, they warn.