The family of a lung patient who died in a northern Turkey hospital April 26 broke the doors of the emergency room, chasing and threatening doctors. Police quickly released them, ANKA news agency reported.
The attack came less than two weeks after Turkey's parliament passed a new law doubling penalties for attacking health workers, a common problem in Turkey.
The 65 year old patient, identified only as T.A., was brought to the emergency room of Farabi Hospital in the Black Sea province of Trabzon.
When doctor Esra Ersöz Genç took over the patient his heart had already stopped twice, she said in a series of tweets where she described the attack.Parliament passes bill bringing harsher penalties for violence against healthcare workers
After Genç notified the family of T.A.'s condition, the patient's heart stopped once more.
"His heart failed to create pressure and he was unable to breathe on his own," Genç said, adding that they proceeded to intubate one of the patient's lungs.
"The patient's heart stopped one last time," Genç said, adding that the patient could not be saved.
Genç said that T.A.'s death was what triggered the family's behavior.
"First they tried to force their way into the emergency room, they broke the doors and windows and battered me and the security guard on their way in. I had cuts on my hands.”Turkish doctors' protest against violence cancelled due to coronavirus case
Afterwards, five members of the patient's family forced their way into the sterilized emergency room.
The family members were not wearing personal protective equipment, when they made their way through the room as they kicked things around and went to stand by T.A., Genç said.
"One of them started chasing us around with an oxygen tube. He would intubate us with it, that's what he was saying when the police got there. I don't know how they got me out of there.”
It took more time for Genç to receive forensic examination, treatment and for her to give her statement to the police, than it took for the police to release the attackers, she said.
In a tweet addressed at Health Minister Fahrettin Koca, Genç said that she was afraid despite the new law passed in parliament.
"They talk about violence in health law but I don't feel safe. What's going to happen on my next shift? I don't know if I'll be able to go back home to my family safely. I'm scared, do you hear me?”Violence against healthcare workers in Turkey increased during AKP tenure