A state House committee has approved a bill making it a crime for patients to assault health-care workers who are treating them.
The Wyoming Tribune Eagle reported Friday the bill sets penalties of up to 12 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
The bill now goes to the full House. It already cleared the Senate.
Several nurses and other health-care workers told the committee of being attacked by patients.
Republican state Rep. Norine Kasperik of Gillette, a co-sponsor of the bill, says it's not uncommon for patients to attack care-givers.
Brenda Hammock, a paramedic with American Medical Response, says the bill isn't targeted at ill patients who strike a health-care worker, but at the "mean drunk" or other patients who think they can assault the person who treats them.
Information from: Wyoming Tribune Eagle, http://www.wyomingnews.com