Introduction:

According to OSHA, workplace violence is any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening, disruptive behavior that occurs at the work site. It can affect and involve employees, clients, customers and visitors. 

Nearly 2 million American workers report having been victims of workplace violence each year. Unfortunately, many more cases go unreported. Research has identified factors that may increase the risk of violence for some workers at certain work sites. Such factors include exchanging money with the public and working with volatile, unstable people. Working alone or in isolated areas may also contribute to the potential for violence. Additionally, time of day and location of work, such as working late at night or in areas with high crime rates, are also risk factors that should be considered when addressing issues of workplace violence. 

Work site assessments; zero-tolerance policies toward workplace violence; and a well-established workplace violence prevention program with engineering and administrative controls, can reduce the incidence of workplace violence.


Resources:

OSHA--Guidelines for Preventing Workplace Violence for Healthcare and Social Service Workers

OSHA--Worker Safety in Hospitals--Caring for Our Caregivers

American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) and Emergency Nurses Association (ENA)'s 2015 Toolkit for Mitigating Violence in the Workplace

The Joint Commission--Workplace Violence Prevention Resources

Workplace Violence Contact

Rhonda Dickman
Clinical Quality Improvement Specialist
615.401.7404
rdickman@tha.com 

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