Family & Friends of Stabbed Harrington Hospital Nurse Wilson to Testify in Favor of ‘Elise’s Law’

Wednesday, July 19, 2017
GoLocalWorcester News Team

Elise Wilson
The friends, family and colleagues of Elise Wilson, the Harrington Hospital nurse who was attacked, are testifying at a state house hearing on Wednesday in favor of ‘Elise’s Law’ to prevent healthcare workplace violence.

“The attack against Elise was vicious and left her fighting for her life. Unfortunately, I cannot say violence against nurses is rare. Nurses and other health care professionals are assaulted every single day at hospitals throughout Massachusetts. We should pass ‘Elise’s Law’ right away to help stop the violence,” said RN Tracy DiGregorio, who was working in the ER at the time of the assault.

The hearing will take place before the Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security in room A2 on Wednesday, July 19 at 10 a.m.

The Incident

Wilson, 65, was assisting a patient on the morning of June 14 at the Southbridge hospital when, police say, the patient took out a knife and stabbed her, causing  severe injuries that required surgery.

“I kissed her goodbye that morning, as I did every day. I told her to have as good a day as she could have, as I did every day. Nothing in this world can ever prepare you for getting ‘THE call’ that I got three hours later. ‘THE call’ telling me my wife was stabbed and they’re doing their best to save her,” said her husband Clifton Wilson.

Wilson is still recovering from the attack and unable to attend the hearing for “Elise’s Law,” but her husband Clifton Wilson and several of her nurse colleagues will be in attendance to read Wilson’s personal testimony and support the legislation.

“I believe that law enforcement best serves our citizens when we are dedicated to crime prevention. To effectively tackle health care violence in Massachusetts, we need to understand the full scope of the problem. This legislation will enable District Attorneys across the Commonwealth to track assaults in health care facilities and to work with nurses, other health care professionals and their advocates to limit violence and reduce harm,” said District Attorney Joseph Early Jr.

Clifton Wilson added, “It’s utterly horrific and shocking that the mere act of going to work has become dangerous business for the people who take care of us when we are sick. Harrington Hospital has installed metal detectors at ER entrances.  People entering are having their bags searched. Nurses and staff will have panic buttons installed on their ID badges. That’s truly what makes this Elise’s Law – not only that Elise was nearly killed on the job, but also that her hospital is putting safeguards in place so that this type of event might be prevented from happening to any other employee there.”

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