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Worker burned in attack in recovery room at Hackensack, NJ hospital

HACKENSACK – A hospital worker was attacked in a rest room at Hackensack University Medical Center, suffering burns and a severe cut before the attacker left early Monday.

The break room assault around 5 a.m. involved a contract nurse, also known as a traveling nurse, setting fire to a woman, as first reported by CBS New York and confirmed at New Jersey 101.5 by a hospital spokesperson, who said there were no witnesses. to the incident.

The nurse had been vetted by her agency, including state and county background checks, drug screening and license review and had worked at Hackensack since mid-November.

The employee, whose identity has not been disclosed, suffered third-degree burns to her upper body and hands as well as a cut to the head that required stitches, according to the district attorney. Bergen County, Mark Musella.

She was treated in the emergency room before being taken to another medical facility for further care, he continued.

The hospital released this statement:

“Violence will not be tolerated in our network. Our doctors, nurses and teams are true heroes and deserve our respect. The safety of our patients and team members is Hackensack Meridian Health’s highest priority.”

Musella said the Hackensack Police Department is assisting in the investigation.

Additional security guards had been posted throughout the Hackensack campus, the hospital spokesperson added.

No potential motive for the attack was shared on Monday afternoon.

A freelance nurse is a healthcare professional who works on a contract basis, rather than being employed full-time at one location and usually travels to different locations to support staff in times of shortage.

Demand for these workers has increased due to the ongoing toll of the COVID pandemic.

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