Nurses and patient at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital stabbed in face by woman with scissors

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A woman remained under police guard at the hospital after the attack.

An elderly patient was stabbed in the face and three nurses wounded after a woman stole a pair of scissors and lashed out at staff inside a Sydney hospital.

Key points:

  • One patient and three nurses were injured during the attack last night
  • A nursing association has called for a “full investigation” into the incident
  • The alleged attacker remains under police guard in hospital

NSW Police said a 29-year-old woman was being treated at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Camperdown about 8:30pm when she became “agitated” and began hitting the wall of her room.

Police said the woman grabbed scissors from a nurse’s pocket and stabbed her twice in the back.

Two nurses who attempted to intervened sustained cuts to their arms.

The 29-year-old then went into a neighbouring room, where she allegedly stabbed a 75-year-old woman, a patient of the hospital, in the face.

Hospital security, doctors and nurses managed to restrain and sedate the woman before police arrived.

man in gown outside hospital during evening

Ted Smith was a patient at the hospital and witnessed police rushing to the scene.

“Cops rushed in, hands on holsters, for a period … a bit of panic but we just cleared out,” he said.

“I saw four [police officers] but my brother who got here before me, he saw more rushing up.”

It’s understood the incident took place in a ward — not the emergency department — and none of the injuries were life threatening.

The woman is currently under police guard in hospital.

Calls for investigation into attack

The general secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association, Brett Holmes, called for a “full investigation” into the violent incident.

“This is a terrible situation… no nurse begins their shift anticipating to suffer injuries on the job,” he said.

A Sydney Local Health District spokeswoman said violence in the city’s hospitals would not tolerated.

“One staff member, who received a puncture wound in the shoulder blade, was treated in the emergency department,” she said. 

“She stayed overnight as a precaution and will be discharged today.

“The other two staff members received minor injuries and are back at work today.”

The elderly patient was treated for superficial wounds, and staff involved were offered counselling and support