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Violent Offences – Hospital (160A/24)


1a. How many reports have been made of violent offences towards hospital staff which were alleged to have taken place on hospital premises in the last five years? Please provide an answer for each year: 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023.

1b. If possible, please can you specify the type of violent offence for each incident reported?

2. How many people have been charged with violence towards hospital staff for the following years: 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023?


Our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide this information within the appropriate (cost) limit within the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (see ‘Reason for decision’ below).

However, although excess cost removes the force’s obligations under the Freedom of Information Act, as a gesture of goodwill we have supplied the closest information relative to your request that we were able to extract from our systems with an electronic search (see attached file 160A_24_attachment.pdf). I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for this request.

Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from a number of data sources used by forces for police purposes. The detail collected to respond specifically to your request is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when interpreting those data.

The figures provided therefore are our best interpretation of relevance of data to your request, but you should be aware that the collation of figures for ad hoc requests may have limitations and this should be taken into account when those data are used.

If you decide to write an article / use the enclosed data we would ask you to take into consideration the factors highlighted in this document so as to not mislead members of the public or official bodies, or misrepresent the relevance of the whole or any part of this disclosed material.

As recommended as good practice by the Information Commissioner’s Office a version of this response may be published on the West Midlands Police website.

Reason for decision

Victim occupation is not a mandatory recording field on our crime recording system, and neither does it have a specific occupation category of ‘hospital staff’. As a consequence, it is not possible to identify the requested information without going into the records of, and reading through, every violence against the person offence where the location was recorded as a hospital.

However, this would require a manual trawl of thousands of cases and to research each one would far exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12).

This means that the cost of compliance with the whole of your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12(1) of the FOI Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.

Further information on section 12 of FOI is available here: