Safety

How HR Can Help Prevent Hospital Gun Violence

Hospital Safety Insider, June 12, 2014

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Human resources professionals can play a vital role in preventing workplace violence in hospitals by setting policies and training employees in techniques to keep everyone safer, according to an article from HealthLeaders Media.
 
The article cites statistics from the CDC that claims 63% of all nonfatal assaults and violent acts in the workplace occurred within the healthcare and social assistance industry.
Emergency departments, of course, typically see the most violence, but in other parts of the hospital, violence can take the form of patients lashing out against doctors, nurses and other ED staff. In some incidents, overstressed clinicians have even gotten into a physical fight with each other on the ED floor, according to the report.
 
 
Experts sourced in the article added that human resources staff must realize that no hospital is immune to violence, especially smaller ones where untrained maintenance people may be doubling as security. They pointed out that many incidents with gun violence haven't been happening in big cities, but in rural areas where people wrongly assume they are immune to it.
Experts in the article suggest that human resources can help battle the problem by training managers to watch employees for sudden personality changes and to confront them. If employees are feeling anxious due to a colleague or patient threatening them, or are having other problems that could lead to violence, there will likely be signs before the situation comes to a head.



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