Workplace violence prevention policies in home health and hospice care agencies.
Workplace violence in the home health industry is a growing concern, but little is known about the content of existing workplace violence prevention programs. The authors present the methods for this study that examined workplace violence prevention programs in a sample of 40 California home health and hospice agencies. Data was collected through surveys that were completed by the branch managers of participating facilities. Programs were scored in six different areas, including general workplace violence prevention components; management commitment and employee involvement; worksite analysis; hazard prevention and control; safety and health training; and recordkeeping and program evaluation. The results and discussion sections consider these six areas and the important gaps that were found in existing programs. For example, although most agencies offered workplace violence training, not every worker performing patient care was required to receive the training. Similarly, not all programs were written or reviewed and updated regularly. Few program differences were observed between agency characteristics, but nonetheless several striking gaps were found. (+info)
Stressful incidents of physical violence against emergency nurses.
Physical violence against nurses has become an endemic problem affecting nurses in all settings. The purpose of this study was to describe acts of physical violence against emergency nurses perceived as stressful using a qualitative descriptive design with a national sample of emergency nurses. The guiding conceptual model for the study was the Ecological Occupational Health Model of Workplace Assault. Narrative accounts of physical violence were analyzed using a constant comparative analysis method. Key findings included risks related to employee, workplace, and aggressor factors, and descriptions of physical violence. Discussion of the study findings suggests that efforts to prevent violence and promote workplace safety need to focus on designing work environments that allow for the quick egress of employees, establishing and consistently enforcing policies aimed at violence prevention, and maintaining positive working relationships with security officers. While patients with mental health or substance use complaints are deemed most likely to commit physical violence, they are not the only patients to become violent. Risk reduction efforts should target all patients and visitors. (+info)
Measurement and monitoring of health care worker aggression exposure.
Aggression exposure is highly prevalent in healthcare workers, and is a complex problem that negatively impacts patient and worker safety and health. Typically only events of high severity (e.g., use of physical restraint or incident reports) are monitored in healthcare settings. Unfortunately, these events are likely a small fraction of all aggressive events that range from verbal to physical. Improved measurement and monitoring of healthcare worker aggression exposure may lead to improved patient and worker safety and health. This article provides an overview of aggression exposure in healthcare and reviews the measurement of aggression, including challenges and common measures. Discussion of a pilot study presents insights gained from using a novel measure of aggression, handheld counters. The conclusion offers implications for research and clinical practice. (+info)
A framework for translating workplace violence intervention research into evidence-based programs.
Workplace violence, a dangerous and complex occupational hazard in the modern health care work environment, presents challenges for nurses, other health care employees, management, labor unions, and regulators. Violence from patients, visitors, and coworkers is often tolerated and explained as part of the job in the fast-paced, stressful health care delivery workplace. Addressing violence in health care requires very purposeful organizational processes conducted by very specific organizational structures. The strength of the scientific evidence for workplace violence prevention strategies is well past the "emerging" evidence stage but has not achieved the "unequivocal" stage. It is unlikely that workplace violence interventions will be tested using randomized controlled experimental conditions. Consequently, educated and aware nurses often provide key leadership for organizations undertaking the development of workplace violence prevention programs, but must do so using local evidence generated at the facility level. In some cases, tools such as state regulations and federal workplace safety policies provide important impetus and support for nurses and hospitals undertaking these transformational programs. This article provides background information about workplace violence and offers a framework for developing comprehensive workplace violence prevention programs built on the existing scientific evidence, regulatory guidance, and locally generated practice evidence. (+info)
Workplace violence in healthcare: strategies for advocacy.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that over 2 million American workers are victims of workplace violence each year. Violence can strike any workplace; no area is immune. But who may be more at risk? Commonly, violence occurs at work and refers to a broad spectrum of behaviors (e.g., violent acts by patients, visitors, and/or coworkers) that result in a concern for personal safety. This article provides a brief overview of workplace violence, and discusses the settings where it often occurs. The authors consider the direct and indirect financial impact of violent acts, such as jury awards for injuries; higher than average turnover; increased requests for medical leaves; unusually high time and attendance issues; and stress related illnesses. Advocacy strategies for nurses are offered to address workplace violence on several levels, such as legislative advocacy, workplace policy, and education. (+info)