Healthcare workers sacrifice their time and energy to help people around the country. Doctors and nurses work long shifts to ensure their patients get the best treatment and receive the proper care they need.
However, medical staff is more likely to be suffering from emotional trauma and physical assault due to their career. According to data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, workplace assaults were four times more likely to happen in the healthcare industry than any other field.
And the United States is only seeing more attacks happen against nurses, doctors and other medical professionals. What can we do to protect healthcare works in the first place?
What can employers do?
It’s challenging to predict exactly when a patient might get violent. However, it’s up to the employer, or hospital, to establish guidelines and training for incidents of violence. They need to train other staff members to recognize signs of assault and prevention techniques to keep violence out of the hospital.
Also, employers need to know when a specific location may be at risk for physical assaults. If your neighborhood has a higher chance for violence, inform employees, and take extra precautions to protect them.
What can staff do?
As a medical staff, you need to engage in training surrounding violent situations in the workplace. Do not let crucial information slide because “you feel safe.” Also, do not be afraid to report all incidents of assault or other injuries to your employer. They must know what is happening, so they can protect other employees.
How should we react?
While everyone should prevent violence in the workplace, it doesn’t completely stop the attacks. It’s crucial to manage our reactions to these situations in a practical, peaceful manner. A few tips for managing a violent situation are:
- Trust your judgment
- Maintain a friendly, calm demeanor
- Avoid situations that don’t feel right
- If you can’t gain control, remove yourself from the situation immediately
- Try to keep an open path for a quick exit
A violent situation is stressful, especially on medical employees. And it’s possible to sustain severe injuries from a patient’s assault. Luckily, Pennsylvania helps injured workers receive compensation for any work-related injuries – including medical professionals.