‘It made it worse:’ Worcester man blames short staffing at St. Vincent Hospital for injury suffered in attack


St. Vincent Hospital nurses and their supporters walk the picket line Thursday in Worcester.
St. Vincent Hospital nurse Erin Berberian walks the picket line with her 1-year-old son, Theo, as the strike continued Thursday in Worcester.

WORCESTER — A city man said he requires plastic surgery after being attacked by a fellow patient Saturday morning at St. Vincent Hospital, and he blamed short staffing for the alleged incident.

“They were so short staffed that it didn’t help the situation,” Matthew Vigeant, 46, said in an interview this week. “If anything, it made it worse.”

In a statement, St. Vincent Hospital spokeswoman Rhiana Sherwood called the alleged attack an “isolated incident.”

“Our security team responded in less than two minutes to this isolated incident, which was an altercation that occurred between two patients,” Sherwood said. “Any attempt to twist this into anything more by the (Massachusetts Nurses Association, the union that represents striking nurses at the hospital) leadership, who is now desperate to demonstrate any problems in this hospital, since their systematic objections have been proven false with data, is irresponsible.”

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