Protecting Yourself from Workplace Violence: Prevention Programs and Education

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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Preventing and Addressing Workplace Violence for Healthcare Employees. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

Learn more about Preventing and Addressing Workplace Violence for Healthcare Employees (online CE course)
Protecting Yourself from Workplace Violence: Prevention Programs and Education

As of 2014, there were 33 states that had laws designating penalties for attacks on nurses and/or required employers to run workplace violence prevention programs (American Nurses Association).
Healthcare employees need to be actively involved in developing a workplace violence prevention program or committee. Employers have to work with employees in making sure such programs are formulated and implemented. According to OSHA, an employee participating in a workplace violence prevention committee should be able to:
  • Participate in the development, implementation, evaluation, and modification of the workplace violence prevention program.
  • Participate in safety and health committees that receive reports of violent incidents or security problems, making facility inspections and responding to recommendations for corrective strategies.
  • Provide input on addition to or redesign of facilities.
  • Identify the daily activities that employees believe put them most at risk for workplace violence.
  • Discuss and assess policies and procedures pertaining to work violence prevention—including complaint and suggestion programs designed to improve safety and security.
  • Ensure that there is a way to report and record incidents and near misses, and that issues are addressed appropriately.
  • Ensure that there are policies in place, so employees are not retaliated against for voicing concerns or reporting injuries.
  • Ensure there are employee training and continuing education programs in place.
Individually, training programs (such as this course) will help the healthcare worker to:
  • Detect which healthcare workers are at the highest risk for violence
  • Identify where and when the highest risk for violence can take place
  • Know what their role is in the process of violence prevention
  • Identify growing levels of combative/aggressive behavior
  • Be able to properly respond to different levels of combative/aggressive behavior