Sunday , May 26 2024

Martial arts club keeps medical staff away from clinic violence

Martial arts master Nguyễn Thanh Phương teaches medical staff moves. — VNA/VNS Photo Đinh Hằng

HÀ NỘI — In Chợ Rẫy Hospital, HCM City, a martial arts club has been established to improve physical fitness and provide self-defence training for medical staff.

Nguyễn Thanh Phương, a nurse and a martial arts master in charge of the club, said it was founded in 2014 under the HCM City Vovinam – Việt Võ Đạo Federation.

The club organised many classes to train its members but some circumstances interrupted them in later years. It was not until July 2023 that the classes could start again.

Now, every class is filled with about 20 students, who predominately come from local hospitals such as Chợ Rẫy Hospital, Bình Dân Hospital, and HCM City’s Pasteur Institute.

“Classes are often held on weekend evenings and with no fixed location. They can be at Chợ Rẫy Hospital’s clinic site or its Oncology Center’s main hall,” said Phương.

Nguyễn Hữu Nghị, a perioperative nurse, participates in the classes every Friday. He has found himself much stronger physically and spiritually. Stress at work has also eased as he has learned how to keep his mind at peace.

“I can train to improve my health and meet many colleagues with the same passion here,” said Nghị.

Phạm Trương Tuyết Phương, a graduate of Phạm Ngọc Thạch University of Medicine, is another member of the club who has never skipped a class since her admission. She attends classes regularly to make friends with seniors from whom she learns life experience, and, more importantly, to learn martial moves against those who can’t control their anger at her clinic.

“I learn martial arts to protect myself from aggressive patients and their family members who accompany them,” said the graduate.

Her fear of being assaulted by patients and their family makes sense as martial arts master Phương himself was a victim of such assaults.

The assault he remembers most vividly was the one involving a foreign patient, who, irritated by the language barrier between the nurse and himself, took a urine pot to attack him.

Being a martial arts master, Phương quickly evaded the attack and left the clinic to bring in another nurse who could speak foreign languages to calm the patient.

“If I hadn’t learned martial arts, I would have been struck on the head by that urine pot,” said Phương.

It saddened him deeply to know that clinic assaults keep happening occasionally over the past few years. He urged assault-prone medical staff to participate in Vovinam classes to learn “not only the techniques to dodge and block punches and kicks but also the art of dealing with traumatic experiences.”

“It is essential to have a gentle and empathetic conversation with patients, which could help avoid misunderstanding and quarrels,” said Phương.

Nurse Nghị, meanwhile, called for heavy penalties on those who commit clinic assaults to “ensure a safe working environment for medical staff.” — VNS

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