New legislation protects Ohio health care workers

COLUMBUS, OH (FOX19) - Ohio State Representative Peter Beck announces the passage of a bill that will protect health care workers on Wednesday.

Substitute House Bill 62 passed by a vote of 83-12 and strives to protect nurses, healthcare professionals, and other health care workers from on-duty assaults. The bill increases the potential penalty of an assault to a fourth-degree felony if the victim is engaged in the performance of his or her duties at the hospital when the attack occurs.

"I am pleased to see the passage of House Bill 62 from the House of Representatives, "Rep. Beck Said. "It is an important piece of legislation that will provide health care professionals with increased protection from unnecessary assaults, so that they can provide thee quality care our residents need, without the added worry of an assault."

Currently, the Ohio Revised Code makes assaults on police officers, firefighters, EMS workers, and teachers a felony that carries extra penalties. Health care workers are not protected, but have the greatest number of assaults in all practice settings according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The bill will now move to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

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