Can I remove a patient without notice if they have verbally abused and threatened a member of staff?

Yes, but bear in mind that the patient's pain or anxiety could be a factor in their behaviour.

Make sure to document your reasons in case you're asked to justify the removal at a later date. It's also advisable to have a practice policy in place about how abusive and threatening behaviour from patients will be treated.

If a violent or aggressive NHS patient is to be removed immediately, you should report the incident to the police first and obtain an incident number. You should only disclose the minimum information necessary to allow for proper investigation.

You should then notify your primary care organisation (PCO) in writing within seven days. If it is inappropriate or unsafe to give an explanation to the patient, the PCO will be responsible for arranging primary care services within a more secure setting, if necessary.

This page was correct at publication on 24/11/2021. Any guidance is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.