An NHS worker was assaulted by a thug in an "appalling" unprovoked attack as he tended to a patient just days before Christmas.
Cyclist paramedic Ian Shortman was on his knees treating a patient when a man sprinted up towards him and kicked him in the head in Manchester city centre on Saturday, 21 December.
Thankfully, he was helped by members of the public before police rushed to the scene in the busy city and arrested a man shortly before 5pm.
Mr Shortman required immediate hospital treatment, including numerous cranial scans due to dizziness and headaches.
Fortunately, the brave NHS worker – who has worked for North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) for 20 years – is now recuperating at home in time for Christmas Day.
Mr Shortman described the assault as "terrifying", but thanked the good samaritans who intervened to help.
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Describing the assault, he said: “At the point of being kicked I was completely vulnerable and disoriented – if it hadn’t been for intervention of the good people out there, I dread to think about the outcome.”
But the dedicated professional said the horrifying attack would not stop him from carrying out his duties.
He continued: "However I refuse to allow one person to ruin a great career serving the people of Manchester, including the homeless, at this time of year when we are needed most.”
Head of service at NWAS Pat McFadden said: “I am absolutely appalled at this abhorrent behaviour. Our staff who work so hard to care for other people when they are most in need should never be subject to such a vile and vicious attack, but sadly it does happen all too often.
“Ian’s positive and courageous attitude is admirable and the trust is supporting him, as we do with all incidents of this type, but it should not be happening. I would like to send out a clear message that this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated and wherever possible, action will be taken against aggressors.”
In the year 2018/19, there were 385 incidents of physical assaults on North West Ambulance Service staff.