A lady was detained after police said she kicked two nurses at a hospital run by her husband’s company, NCH Healthcare System of Naples, Fla.
According to the Naples Daily News, Kristen Hiltz was arrested on two charges of violence against emergency medical personnel. Ms. Hiltz is the wife of Paul Hiltz, the CEO of NCH Healthcare System since 2019.
The accusations originate from Ms. Hiltz’s visit to NCH Baker Hospital on October 18. According to police documents quoted by the local news site, she kicked two registered nurses in the chest at about 11:15 p.m. The nurses want to file charges.
A hospital representative told the Naples Daily News that security was alerted immediately after the event and that standard operating protocols were followed. Ms. Hiltz was intubated in the intensive care unit when Naples police arrived seven hours later. She was freed on Oct. 24 and turned herself into local police, who arrested her.
According to NCH Healthcare System, safety officials and emergency department staff were able to safely regulate the situation, and it did not require urgent police assistance.
NCH Healthcare System informed Becker’s that the safety and well-being of its employees and clinicians is its priority, but that owing to HIPAA regulations, it cannot comment on individual situations.
“I am deeply saddened by this incident, and any violence against our healthcare colleagues will not be tolerated,” Mr. Hiltz stated in a statement sent to Becker’s. “The safety of my teammates at NCH is and has always been my top priority.” This patient event was handled in the same manner as any other, and I completely support our NCH healthcare team’s rights.
“Healthcare professionals deserve the utmost respect and compassion for the tireless care they provide our patients,” stated Mr. Hiltz. “Every NCH teammate deserves to feel safe and secure, and I’m especially worried about the two nurses who were directly affected by this incident.” Thank you for your exceptional treatment and ongoing commitment to all of our staff and clinicians who serve on the frontlines every day.”
In May, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed legislation strengthening criminal penalties for anyone who deliberately abuse or battery hospital staff. Assailants who assault a hospital worker risk a misdemeanor charge of the first degree rather than a misdemeanor charge of the second degree under the legislation.