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Research Transfer > System-Linked Research Unit Working Paper Series #95-10
   

95-10

System-Linked Research Unit
Working Paper Series #95-10

NOT IN VAIN: THE VALUE OF A VIOLENCE PREVENTION PROGRAMME
IN A HEALTH CARE FACILITY

P. McAvella, B. Hershey

Violence is rampant in society and the potential for an increase in violent episodes exists in our hospitals. Recognition of these facts, hastened our actions to modify our approach to this problem, and improve the level of effectiveness in dealing with incidents of disruptive and assaultive behaviour. The method chosen was utilization of the National Crisis Prevention Institute model, specifically, the Non-Violent Crisis Prevention Program.

The aim of this program was to assist staff in developing their knowledge, skill and confidence to handle violent situations with minimal anxiety and maximum security. This paper describes the experience of launching the program. The focus is on staff education, implementation strategies and the evaluation component.

The modified "Code White" program became effective in 1991. To date, over 300 hospital staff have participated in the introductory education sessions and annual refresher courses. Staff evaluations of the program outcomes were very positive and have been rated by staff to be at the 80-100% effectiveness level. The observation of a safer environment for staff and patients has been endorsed repeatedly.

Safe management of potentially violent situations in our health care facilities is a current professional and ethical issue of critical importance. Ongoing commitment of managers and all levels of staff, in this program, can enhance therapeutic rapport with patients and families, decrease incidents of acting out behaviour and lower the risk of potential liability actions, as a result of injuries to both patients and staff.

If you are encountering incidents of violence in your facility, feel encouraged and optimistic! This approach to violence management is Back to Topeffective and not in vain!

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