A Utah police officer violently detained a nurse in Utah after she refused a request to draw blood from a patient. Since the incident, the hospital issued changes to its policy for handling the drawing of blood. Northern Utah authorities sought to explain the policy after the controversy emerged when the nurse was arrested. The police officer is facing further trouble following the incident.

The new policy explained

AOL reported that the hospital made huge changes to its policy after the arrest of nurse Alex Wubbels. Top members of the hospital held a press conference where they stated that nurses would no longer come in contact with law enforcement.

Chief Nurse Margaret Pearce said that the policy was put in place so that this wouldn't happen to caregivers again. The incident in question happened on July 26 when Salt Lake City Detective Jeff Payne came to the hospital to get a blood sample from a patient involved in an accident. Nurse Wubbels shared the written hospital policy with Detective Payne and told him that the blood couldn't be drawn because the patient was unconscious. Body camera and surveillance footage showed the officer taking the nurse from the hospital and placing her in a police car after he put her in handcuffs.

WCPO reported that the hospital put the policy in place after the incident sparked widespread outrage. The nurse refused to allow the officer to draw blood because the patient was unconscious.

The arrest was also captured on body cam video and prompted an apology from the Salt Lake City mayor and the police department. Instead of interacting with nurses, law enforcement officials will now be directed to health supervisors who are highly trained in the rules and laws involved. CEO Gordon Crabtree praised Wubbels for her efforts and called her a hero.

Fallout from the arrest

ABC News reported that the fallout from the situation brought both policy changes and apologies. Not only did the mayor and police department apologize, hospital officials also apologized because hospital security didn't intervene to prevent the incident. Policies were also put in place to prevent it from happening again.

University of Utah Police Chief Dale Brophy, who supervises security at the hospital, said that none of the security officers had been disciplined for the incident and will receive additional training on how to handle these types of situations in the future. Officer Payne was later put on leave.

The Standard-Examiner reported that Northern Utah authorities clarified the policy after the nurse was arrested. Officer Payne accused her of impeding an investigation after she refused to draw the blood, quoting hospital policy that said it can only be done if the patient consents, police have a warrant, or the patient is under arrest. The hospital further clarified its policy by stating that police will no longer be allowed in the emergency room, and communication with staff will be limited to supervisors. Daron Cowley, head of public relations at Intermountain Healthcare, which owns Ogden’s McKay-Dee Hospital, said that the internal policy used by hospital staff will largely remain unchanged.