Doctors, nurses wearing helmets

(Guangzhou Daily/Reuters)
Updated: 2006-12-26 10:54

Doctors and nurses at a Chinese hospital have taken to wearing hard hats on their rounds after coming under attack from relatives seeking compensation over a patient's death, newspapers reported on Tuesday.

Staff at Shanxia hospital in the booming southern city of Shenzhen had been pushed and shoved and spat at for days by the relatives and hired protesters, the Beijing News said.

"There was no other option," the newspaper quoted a nurse as saying. "To ensure our safety, the hospital gave everyone a helmet."

The patient, who was injured in a car accident, unexpectedly died when he was ready to go home after 17 days' treatment, the newspaper said. The relatives demanded the hospital take responsibility and called for compensation.

Disputes between patients and hospitals are now common in China, where market reforms of the 1980s ended cradle-to-grave welfare for the masses.

Doctors and nurses examine a patient while wearing helmets at a hospital in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong Province December 24, 2006. The crew of the hospital all wear helmets in case that relatives of a patient who died in the hospital come and strike. [Guangzhou Daily]


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