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Workers open up about assaults at Hawaii State HospitalUPDATED 7:22 PM HST Nov 20, 2013Video Transcript
state hospital. Some say violent assaults on staff are on the rise. Good evening, I'm Paula Akana, And I'm Yunji De Nies. Lawmakers are calling for a stop to it, before someone is killed. KITV4's Catherine Cruz has more in our TOP story... Two senators are calling for a special investigative hearing into the attacks. They hope to get judiciary, public safety and health department officials to the table to address the cries for help. - 25;16 - ??? -"I got injured by him hitting me in the head and slamming against the wall" Emelinda Yarte says she has lived with pain for four years, after being attacked by a mixed martial arts fighter at the Hawaii State Hospital. And she was also living with fear, because she was told by the prosecutor's office that he had been released. - Emelinda Yarte 31 : 21 - 31: 48 - "I cannot sleep. I do not want to go out knowing that the patient is outside. I don't know what is going to happen. Was going to see him? I got so scared. He is out in the community? I got scared," There are four workers suffering from post-traumatuic stress and their doctor says he could no longer be silent. - Dr. Scott Miscovich 44:11 44: 19 - "They have all been reccommended to psycologists to see them get through this, but we are getting resistance form the state to allow that to be treated which I think is a major issue," One by one they recounted their attacks. Ryan Oyama 7:52 - 8: 00 - "I was sitting at my post and a patient was walking by and he just punched me in the head for no reason," - Kalford Keanu 21:00- 21:14 -"The patient had also assaulted two days prior. He could have been put in restraints for the weekend but that choice wasnt made and as a result I was assaulted. It happens alot." And this charge nurse knocked unconscious by an attack is calling for a review of the current treatment policies. - Joshua Akeo RN 16:09 -16 :21 - It's very difficult to begin treatment when he is violent. He is punching He is spitting. He is biting. It's very, very difficult." - upper last take 5:31- 5:40 The hospital has long had a history of problems At one time it had been under a federal court order to improve the overcrowing and poor conditon of its facilties," Much has improved over the years but staffing remains an issue for some. Six years ago lawmakers passed a law making assault on hospital staff a class c felony. But some senators say changing times may mean a review of current practices is overdue. - Josh Green 35: 54- 36:05 - "Crytal-meth-amphetami ne as it entered in this society in 15-25 years and created a new class of violence and mental illness. So this new class of violence and mental illness has ended up with the suffereing of these good people," - Clayton 37:24- 37: 33 - "The voices that you hear today are the voices that are at risk every day at that hospital, at this very moment," The hospital does have private security patrolling the premises, but the state says in keeping with national standards for hospitals, armed guards are not allowed on staff. The state health department declined an on camera intervew but issued a written statement saying the well-being of staff is a priority... It says there have been 90 reported assaults at the hospital so far this year. But it is down from 120 last year--and 132 the year before. Six of the cases this year resulted in loss work time. There were four the year before and six in 2011. Back to you.