Unit in lockdown after assault

A MENTAL health unit remains in lockdown after a nurse was attacked and seriously injured during a planned escape attempt at Baillie Henderson Hospital.

The male nurse, 31, was king-hit during an attack involving 10 patients in the Ridley unit on Saturday night.

He sustained a fractured jaw and fractured eye socket.

Four staff members went to the aid of their colleague and were also assaulted.

Queensland Nurses Union organiser Jenni Ballantyne met with some of the victims yesterday.

"QNU is very concerned for the safety of staff," Mrs Ballantyne said.

"I've had a meeting with members and staff are shaken. They are upset and so are management.

"We'll continue to work with management and monitor any investigation that is ongoing.

"We want to make sure if there are deficits identified, we want those fixed up to ensure this does not happen again."

A staff member overheard a conversation by a group of patients, which in retrospect, was the planning of the attack.

A patient was heard to say, "I'm a code red (high risk). I've got nothing to lose, I'm in".

The Ridley unit is medium-security facility - the highest security level at the hospital.

The 31-year-old nurse is awaiting specialist treatment at the Princess Alexandra Hospital for his serious facial injuries.

Police investigations are continuing.

No charges have been laid at this stage.

Topics:  assault baillie henderson hospital lockdown mental illness police queensland nurses union toowoomba

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