Stop the violence: Coast doctors say enough is enough
DOCTOR Logan Stuckey's frustration over alcohol-fuelled violence mounts with every stitch.
As he patches a gash on a drunk person's head while copping abuse, violence and wafts of that pungent smell of dried blood mixed with alcohol, he wonders when the unnecessary violence will ever end.
The frustrations of the emergency medical staff at the Nambour General Hospital are mounting as each weekend passes and more victims or instigators of alcohol- and drug-related violence present for treatment.
Dr Stuckey said alcohol-related violence accounted for a "significant proportion" of the workload on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.
Since arriving at the Nambour hospital in 2007, Dr Stuckey said the situation had grown worse as the Coast's drinking culture escalated.
"It was bad when I got here and it has become no better," Dr Stuckey said.
"From an emergency department point of view, it is incredibly frustrating to deal with a person who presents with alcohol-related violence.
"They are difficult and dangerous to manage.
"There have been a number of cases where staff and I have been assaulted while trying to attend to someone who is violent.
How bad is alcohol-fuelled violence on the Sunshine Coast
This poll ended on 17 July 2014.
Terrible, there are unnecessary fights happening every weekend
No that bad, it is over exaggerated
It is pretty bad, but it is improving
I have no idea, I don't go out on the weekends
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
"Everyone has got to be aware that any violence is not acceptable. It can have severe consequences.
"From alcohol-related falls and slips to a lot of alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents and people being punched and bashed, there is a continuous stream of people."
Dr Stuckey said most staff frustrations came from the fact that alcohol-related medical problems were preventable.
"When I am there stitching up someone's head who is being abusive, offensive and generally unpleasant, with that sickly, sweet smell of partly dried blood and alcohol breathing on you while you are trying to stitch them up, it's really frustrating," he said.
"Especially while you are also trying to run a busy emergency department.
"These sorts of incidents are so preventable.
"This should be a place of peace where we look after people."
Mooloolaba Police Beat officer-in-charge Steve McDonald said there had been a unified move by business owners, transport services, police and security to curb binge-drinking and alcohol-related violence.
"I've seen some shocking things but things have calmed down in recent years," Sgt McDonald said.
"People are starting to come out in the warmer summer months - that's when we get trouble.
"We have extra places where we patrol and a big thing we do is walk around venues in uniform to have presence inside the venue, outside the entrance and in the streets on foot and in vehicles."
From July, 2012, to July, 2013, 72 people were assaulted in the Mooloolaba area.