Illinois House approves Wheeler-backed bill to protect nurses from workplace violence

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois House of Representatives approved legislation Wednesday, House Bill 4100, aimed at protecting nurses and other health care workers in Illinois hospitals, clinics, veterans homes and correctional facilities from violent acts committed by patients or inmates. State Representative Keith R. Wheeler, R-Oswego, is Chief Co-sponsor of the legislation which now heads to the State Senate for approval.

Specifically, Representative Wheeler’s legislation would mandate that all health care employers implement workplace violence programs. It also includes protections for whistleblowers who file a complaint, report allegations of misconduct, or provides information or testimony in any investigation, hearing, or inquiry with regard to a violation of the law at any licensed health care facility; including hospitals, any facility licensed under the MC/DD Act* or ID/DD Community Care Act**, or an Illinois  veterans home.

“Our hardworking and dedicated nurses and other health care workers put themselves at physical risk each and every day treating patients either in a hospital setting or in an Illinois correctional or juvenile justice facility,” Representative Wheeler said. “These men and women deserve to work in an environment that looks out for their physical well-being and ensures protections for those who report lapses within the system.”

The legislation was inspirited in response to a May 2017 incident in which an inmate from the Kane County Jail, receiving medical treatment at the Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital in Geneva, took two nurses captive during an hours-long standoff that ended when a regional SWAT officer fatally shot the inmate.XXX   For questions or more information, please call Representative Wheeler’s office at (630) 345-3464.

*The MC/DD Act refers to employees at Medically Complex Facilities for Persons with Developmental Disabilities (MC/DD).

**The ID/DD Act refers to employees at an Intermediate Care Facility for Persons with Developmental Disabilities (ID/DD).    

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