Overview: The scope and impact of workplace violence in healthcare setting. How common is it? What is the financial cost? How does it impair the ability of a healthcare organization to provide quality care and attract as well as retain employees.
The four types of workplace violence and their associated risk factors.
Workplace violence prevention program elements including- Management Commitment and Employee Involvement: Without active participation from "C" level on down the effectiveness of workplace violence policies will be greatly reduced.
Worksite Analysis: Surveying the physical plant to identify hazards and deficiencies and recommend action to reduce the opportunity for and the likelihood of violence is often the best first step. A process for maintaining, reviewing and analyzing records of workplace violence incidents to determine how future occurrences could be prevented should be implemented.
Training and Education: Employees need to be trained on how to respond if confronted by violence or potential violence. The organization's policies, and the safety of patients, visitors and them employee must be covered. This should include the concept of "Universal Precautions for Violence", i.e., that violence should be expected, but can be avoided or mitigated through preparation. Employees should receive regular training on:
Early recognition of escalating behavior or warning signs
Ways to prevent volatile situations and de-escalate individuals
Protecting oneself and others in violent situations
Why should you attend: Workplace violence continues to emerge as an important issue in healthcare facilities. Violence against healthcare practitioners, including nurses, physicians, social workers, emergency responders, and others can foster medical errors, reduce patient satisfaction, contribute to preventable adverse outcomes, increase the cost of care, and cause qualified clinicians, administrators and managers to seek new positions in less hazardous work environments.
OSHA, state regulators, The Joint Commission of Health Care Accreditation, DNV and HFAP and various industry groups have begun to push for "universal precautions for violence". That is, that violence should be expected but can be avoided or mitigated through personal safety training. Frequent training also can reduce the likelihood of being assaulted.
Hospitals and healthcare facilities should, and generally do, employ a variety of safeguards and work diligently to maintain a safe place for employees, patients and visitors. Yet despite these effort workplace violence can never be completely prevented and healthcare campuses are vulnerable.
Incidents involving gunfire (So called "Active Shooter" events.) are the most spectacular and therefore draw most media attention. However, as this type of event is extremely rare in almost all communities, healthcare organization generally and management in particular may become complacent and adopt the belief that "Since it hasn't happened here, it can't happen here". This represents flawed logic, which is known as. "The Rule of Self-Exclusion." In many cases this rule remains enforce until or unless a fortunate close call or an unfortunate tragedy demonstrates the need for plans, policies and procedure to be implemented to prevent workplace violence and mitigate harm it when it occurs.
Taking proactive steps to address workplace violence directly benefits employers by providing:
Reduced exposure to liability and enforcement action in the event of an incidentRelated lawsuits result in average settlements of $600,000 and average jury awards of $3 Million
Comply with government and industry standards
Maintaining job satisfaction and reducing employee turnover
Establishing a hospital as an employer of choice
Providing some protection from increased Worker's Comp and other insurance premiums
Preventing adverse impact on the quality of patient care
Areas Covered in the Session:
Scope and Impact of Workplace Violence in the Healthcare Setting
The Four Types of Workplace Violence and Their Associated Risk Factors
Elements of an Effective Workplace Violence Program
Worksite Hazard Analysis
Universal Precautions for Violence
Who Will Benefit:
Security Directors, Managers & Officers
Safety Managers, Directors and Officers
Members of the Safety Team
Healthcare accounts for 18% of the workforce, but nearly half of all workplace violence happens to people in healthcare occupations.
Joe Rosner is the Director of Best Defense USA and nationally recognized expert on workplace violence and personal safety for health care and other occupations. He is the author of Street Smarts & Self Defense for Childrenas well books and articles on workplace violence prevention and personal safety for healthcare.