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Violence adds to workers’ hazards in nursing homes and psychiatric units

The Pump Handle: A water cooler for the public health crowd, published a good, succinct post on healthcare workplace violence in “Violence Against Healthcare Workers in Nursing Homes and Psychiatric Hospitals.” [1]

Citing a NIOSH survey of nursing home workers, The Pump Handle reminds that “34% of nursing assistants reported experiencing physical injuries from residents’ aggression.”

Also cited were Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers showing that “nursing homes and psychiatric units are the most dangerous settings for healthcare workers,” according to the post.

I know from an interview with the president of the American Nurses Association, appearing in the December Medical Environment Update, [2] that the association has identified workplace violence prevention as one of its key points for advocacy.

Also on November 2, the Violence Against Nurses law went into effect in New York state. The law offers nurses the same protection as provided to police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians. See “NY law makes violence against nurses a felony.” [3]

Are these measures enough or is more needed—perhaps requiring the same nationwide effort as the passage of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act 10 years ago?

Let us know in the comment section below.

[4]Protect your staff and patients from violence in the emergency department. [4] Violence in healthcare—like the recent incident at Johns Hopkins Hospital—is on the rise. Join HCPro for Violence in the ED: Proven Strategies to Keep Your Facility Safe, [4]a 90-minute on-demand Webcast where you’ll learn a five-step approach to keeping your staff and patients safe. Our experienced speakers will also guide you through regulatory requirements related to workplace violence and provide action plans to train staff to handle unruly patients and prevent dangerous situations.