Increasing punishment prescription

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Glancing through our court pages in recent weeks confirms the depressing fact that those working in the health service continue to be on the receiving end of offenders’ behaviour.

A patient was jailed for threatening Borders General Hospital security staff, while another threatened to throw a hot drink at a hospital employee. Then there was the case of paramedics who had to take refuge in their ambulance when confronted by a drunken, violent teenager in Jedburgh.

And this week we report on the imprisonment of a boozed-up lout who caused a disturbance in the BGH accident and emergency department.

Now we’re not having a go at sheriffs who sit on the benches of Borders courts – they have proved they’re quite prepared to lock up offenders. Indeed, a few years ago one of them – Kevin Drummond – visited the BGH to speak to doctors, nurses and other NHS workers about this problem.

However, it seems some miscreants aren’t getting the message.

Maybe it’s time to up the dosage in terms of sentencing for those who make the jobs of hard-pressed health workers even tougher.