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Nursing organizations publish updated workplace violence guidelines, toolkit

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Schaumburg, IL — The Emergency Nurses Association and the American Organization for Nursing Leadership have updated their “Guiding Principles” on Mitigating Violence in the Workplace and related toolkit.

Persistent violent incidents in hospitals over the past few years prompted the organizations to review and update the resources, according to ENA. The original set was released seven years ago.

A study by University of Virginia researchers published in September found that 44% of nurses reported experiencing physical violence, while 68% said they were verbally abused between February and May/June 2020.

The guidelines feature nine principles, including using evidence-based strategies to address all aspects of violence, establishing support from numerous hospital departments and promoting a culture of safety.

The toolkit highlights six steps to address and mitigate violence:

  • Understand the definitions and types of workplace violence
  • Create a culture of non-violence in which all threats or incidents of violence are a priority
  • Assess facilities for risk and mitigating those factors
  • Develop a comprehensive workplace violence prevention plan
  • Train and deploy staff on a continuous basis
  • Evaluate and measure impact of violence prevention programs

“Workplace violence in health care remains a pervasive problem that touches all areas of a hospital, sometimes in unbelievably tragic ways,” ENA President Jenn Schmitz said in a press release. “The toolkit and these guiding principles show how important teamwork is to developing and implementing solutions that create a path to safer work environments with improved protective measures for emergency nurses, their health care colleagues and patients.”

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