Lawmakers in Beijing are mulling over better protection of medical staff after several attacks on doctors by patients or their relatives received widespread public condemnation.
The Standing Committee of Beijing Municipal People's Congress on Thursday started to review a draft regulation on public security management at the city's hospitals.
People should not verbally abuse, threaten, attack or stalk medical workers; disturb the normal order at hospitals; occupy or damage hospital property; or make a scene at hospitals, according to the draft regulation.
Violators will receive severe punishment if they commit or incite others to commit illegal acts against hospitals or medical workers, and information about such violators will be shared at the local and national credit information sharing platforms, it said.
Hospitals should have an adequate number of security guards and sufficient equipment, and they should conduct 24-hour security inspections. They should also install emergency call equipment in medical offices, emergency rooms and wards, the draft said.
People entering hospitals should undergo security checks, and security guards should report to the police if they find anyone bringing restricted or hazardous items into hospitals, it said.
Public security authorities should establish police posts at secondary and tertiary hospitals to work with security departments, and local police should establish cooperation mechanisms with the security departments at primary hospitals that do not have police posts, according to the draft.
Hospitals should notify the police if people who have a record of attacking or threatening to attack medical workers enter the hospital, and hospital guards should accompany these people while they receive treatment, it said.
Medical workers have the right to refuse to offer medical treatment when their personal safety is threatened, it added.
The draft rule came after a deadly case in which Yang Wen, a doctor at Civil Aviation General Hospital in Beijing, was stabbed to death on Dec 24 by a man who was unsatisfied with his mother's treatment.
Sun Wenbin, the attacker, was convicted of intentional homicide at a court in Beijing on Jan 16. The death penalty was upheld by a higher court in the capital on Feb 14 and is now awaiting final approval from the Supreme People's Court.
In another case on Jan 20, four people, including prominent ophthalmologist Tao Yong, were injured in a knife attack at Beijing Chaoyang Hospital. Their injuries were not life-threatening. Cui Zhenguo, the 36-year-old attacker, has been arrested on suspicion of intentional homicide.