Psychiatric Patients Assaulting Nurses. I will get right to the point, if you are Nurse employed at a facility that is eliminating physically restraining dangerous patients, then get your health and life insurance paid. These ludicrous decisions are made by the leadership who are not in harms way. Did these facilities suddenly come up with a new method to deescalate psychiatric patient who is abusive, threatening and violent? I think NOT!
Your Facility Leadership May be Placing You at Risks
Psychiatric Patients Assaulting Staff. Your leadership obviously doesn’t give a damn about your safety and welfare. If during a violent patient altercation, you sustain a traumatic brain injury or lose your vision is the leadership going to be there for you? Some genius who is not in harms way has determined that it was cruel and inhumane to physically restrain psychiatric patients who are out of control. Staff are now going to be conditioned to try to use verbal de-escalation on psychotic patient who is outside his mind and a potential threat.
I don’t like having to restrain someone but it beats getting physically injured by a dangerous patient. I am not referring to an elderly patient with dementia. I am talking about the 6 foot 250 adolescent or adult male who was brought in by police following smoking Wet (marijuana laced with embalming fluid) or the same size guy who has been off his meds for three months. You can put up any claim you wish that physical restraints don’t work. But I will tell you from having worked as a Registered Nurse in inner city emergency departments, that sometimes it is necessary to restrain patients, and the method is effective. Of course the Nurse has to routinely monitor the patient and check the physical restraints.
The reasons to physically restrain someone was due to a patient who is violent or self-destructive or whose behavior jeopardizes the immediate physical safety of him- or herself or another person may meet the behavioral health requirements for restraints. Examples of such behaviors include:
- hitting, kicking, or pushing
- pulling on an I.V. line, tube, or other medical equipment or device needed to treat the patient’s condition
- attempting to get out of a bed, chair, or hospital room before discharge, in patients who are confused or otherwise unable to follow safety directions.
Before using restraints, always explore alternatives for keeping the patient and others safe. When considering such options, discuss with the patient any conditions that may need to be addressed, such as pain, anxiety, fear, or depression. If distraction and other alternatives prove ineffective at calming the patient and he or she continues to pose a risk, consult with other healthcare team members.
Choosing the right restraint: https://www.americannursetoday.com/choosing-restraints/
Violence Against Nurses
Psychiatric Patients Assaulting Staff. Violence against nurses is occurring in the news every week. I do empathize that physically restraining a patient is dehumanizing. But given the danger and risks for staff injury, the necessity to physically restrain a patient is far better then the Nurse getting their ass kicked by a deranged patient. It goes right back to the people outside of harms way who are making these stupid executive decisions. If leadership is not going to put in measures to ensure that Nurses are protected then they get ready to be sued.
Its a fact that Nurses are more likely to be injured by assault then a Corrections Officer and Police Officer. Imagine that you the Nurse is working to care for patients and evidence states that you are more likely to incur injury from patient then law enforcement.
Studies show over and over again that violence against healthcare workers has become a rising epidemic.
Violence Against Nurses Higher Than Most Professions
The prevalence of workplace violence in health care remains higher than most professions.
- According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), approximately 75 percent of nearly 25,000 workplace assaults reported annually in health care and social service settings.
- The National Crime Victimization Survey showed health care workers have a 20 percent higher chance of being the victim of workplace violence than other workers.
- The American College of Emergency Physicians reported that 70 percent of emergency physicians have reported acts of violence against them, yet only 3 percent pressed charges.
So many people don’t want to talk about it. They think they will be in trouble if they talk at work about being assaulted.
In healthcare, workers provide the safety and care for the patients. But they end up in a conflicted situation. They have to decide if they are going to protect themselves or their patients in certain violent situations, Simpson says.
Nurses feel like it is just part of the job to deal with abusive language, threats and the violence. But patients showing signs of agitation or aggression should be identified as high-risk to prevent an act of violence.
Nurses Say Violent Assaults Against Healthcare Workers Are a Silent Epidemic:
Nurses working in acute care facilities do not deal with steady stream of psychiatric patients and yet they are incurring violence. Can one imagine the frequency of violence that the Nurses working inside psychiatric facilities, which may incur with the advent of the new push to eliminate physical restraints?
Violence Against Nurses: The New Epidemic: https://htrsd.org/all-courses/
OSHA: Violence in the Healthcare Workplace. In an interesting posting, the National Law Review discusses some OSHA eye opening statistics on violence in the health care workplace recently released by OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. It’s clear that this is a problem that deserves more attention than it has received to date.
Nurse injury from patient violence is costly
The costs can be attributed to healthcare dollars spent in any injuries sustained, missed shifts, and the psychological costs in the act of being attacked and in living with any permanent physical injury. The cost of injuries as a result of violence will have long and wide ramifications for both the victim and the healthcare facility in terms of treating the injuries, cost of long-term recuperation or disabled workers, and lost wages.
The nursing profession is experiencing a serious shortage at the present time; this coupled with violence toward nurses escalating – predictions are that the shortage will grow for the 10 years, partly due to the abuse that nurses are being exposed to each time they report for their shift. There is a direct correlation between understaffing and working short have increased incidences of violent acts perpetrated on nurses Healthcare organizations that allow nurses to work short have increased costs due to nurse injuries, treatment costs, and lost days from work (The Joint Commission, 2018).
Health care employers must heed the growing concern
OSHA: Violence in the Healthcare Workplace. Health care employers must heed the growing concern in their workforces about the risk of job-related violence. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) has gathered statistics showing that health care workers are subjected to a high rate of workplace violence. See Guidelines for Preventing Workplace Violence for Healthcare and Social Services Workers (“Guidelines”) at pp. 2-3.
While extensive, the Guidelines are, as OSHA recognizes, not a standard or regulation. However, in the preamble to the Guidelines, OSHA points out that the Occupational Safety and Health Act’s (“OSH Act’s”) general duty clause, Section 5(a)(1), “requires employers to provide their workers with a workplace free from recognized hazards that are causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm.”
Read more at natlawreview.com
Violence Against Nurses: The New Epidemic
Check out our Video: https://htrsd.org/product/violence-against-nurses-the-new-epidemic/
Link to our course on Violence Against Nurses: The New Epidemic
Nurse Assault and Violence At Work. Violence against Nurses at work is growing epidemic in the United States than in many other places across the globe. Nurses working in healthcare caring for patients must be safe. Nurses have been assaulted by both patients and family members. The American Nurses Association states that 1 out 4 Nurses are assaulted at work. That is 25%. Nurses are at the greatest risks for violence working in the areas of the Emergency Department and the Psychiatric units.
Creating a Culture of Safety
Nurse Assault and Violence At Work. Healthcare Delivery Employers need to create a culture of safety to influence organizational wide safety. There needs to be mettle detector for all victors screened upon entering hospital. Nurses need to be taught how to utilize therapeutic communication. For psychiatric patients the Therapeutic Options is generally the preferred method to deescalate an angry patient. Some patients may have had traumas which are triggered and Nurses need to learn how to implement Trauma Informed Care and improved communication strategies.
Nurse Assault and Violence At Work. American Nurses Today posted an article titled; Patient violence: It’s not all in a day’s work “However, according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, “…the spectrum [of violence]…ranges from offensive language to homicide, and a reasonable working definition of workplace violence is as follows: violent acts, including physical assaults and threats of assault, directed toward persons at work or on duty.” In other words, patient violence falls along a continuum, from verbal (harassing, threatening, yelling, bullying, and hostile sarcastic comments) to physical (slapping, punching, biting, throwing objects)”.
Violence against health workers is unacceptable. It has not only a negative impact on the psychological and physical well-being of health-care staff, but also affects their job motivation. As a consequence, this violence compromises the quality of care and puts health-care provision at risk. It also leads to immense financial loss in the health sector.
Read more at who.int
Link to our course on Violence Against Nurses: The New Epidemic
Nurses Assaulted More then The Police. Nurses on the job are facing down real physical danger as well as emotional, psychological and verbal abuse while delivering patient care. Who wants to come to work to deliver patient care only to fear for their safety? That kind of kind abuse is workplace violence and is a major contributor to burnout. I am not talking about the patient with dementia and psychiatric disorder who is abusive. I am talking about those who is awake, alert, orienting to person, place and time. Nurses are assaulted with greater frequency then Police Officers and Prison Guards. We need to get way past this old thinking that Nurses have to tolerate abuse. Nurse Abuse can come from patients, the families, coworkers and physicians.
WORKPLACE VIOLENCE IS UNACCEPTABLE
I remember working at an urban hospital emergency department in the early 90’s and getting spit on, threatened cursed at by patients who were AAOx3. I wasn’t cool with it than either. But at the time, the Nurse Manager said it comes with the job and you need to suck it up. No nurse or other healthcare employee should have to put up with any sort of emotional, psychological, physical or verbal abuse at work.
U.S. STATES PROHIBITING NURSE ASSAULT WITH PENALTIES
Nurses Assaulted More then The Police. Only those state with laws designating penalties for assaults that include “nurses” are reflected below:
Establish or increase penalties for assault of “nurses”: AL, AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IA, KS, KY, LA, MS, MO, NE, NV, NM, NY, NV, NC, OH, OK, OR, RI, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, and WV. https://www.nursingworld.org/practice-policy/advocacy/state/workplace-violence2/
WE ARE NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE
The fact of the matter is that nurses and other health care professionals are no longer going to be turning the other cheek. The tide is turning, and if healthcare employers don’t take ownership in protecting their employees better. Its incumbent for employers to provide security officers, policies, procedures and training. For employers who do not comply, they are increasingly like to find themselves dragged right into a lawsuit for failure to protect their workers.
Violence Against Nurses: The New Epidemic
Violence Against Nurses CE Course: https://htrsd.org/product/violence-against-nurses-the-new-epidemic/
Violence in the Emergency Department
Violence in the Emergency Department CE Course: https://htrsd.org/product/violence-in-the-emergency-department/