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Workplace Violence Prevention and Management Program

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Workplace Violence Prevention and Management Program

Recent events in Hawaii have made both employers and employees more aware of workplace violence and they are getting more concerned regarding their personal safety.

The Xerox shooting and the Sheraton stabbing are good examples of such violent episodes. Both incidences exhibited prior evidence of violence in the workplace; and if proper intervention by management was initiated, these tragedies could have been prevented. Therefore, employers need a good workplace violence program to protect their employees as well as their customers.

Tripler Army Medical Center is implementing such a workplace violence program. The purpose of the program is to protect the hospital's employees, patients, visitors and volunteers from workplace violence. Violence, as defined in the program, is unwanted or hostile physical contact, threat or harassment that may occur between or among employees, patients, volunteers or visitors. Tripler knows that no employer is immune from workplace violence; however, the hospital is committed to promoting a work environment free from violence, threat of violence, harassments, intimidation and other disruptive behavior.

The main focus of the program is to identify potential violent incidents and to use early intervention to prevent such from occurring. The program must train its staff to look for warning signs of trouble, identify the problem, and diffuse the potential violent situation. The Social

Work Service Department has been given the task of designing this program, and the Safety Office has been given the task of implementing and will be the proponent of the program.

The initial training of the employees of the hospital is to train the trainer. In other words, the Social Work Department will train all supervisors that work for the hospital on prevention of workplace violence. The training consists of trainer sessions, videos, and power point presentations. All supervisors are required to take this training. Once the supervisors' training is completed, the newly inducted trainers are required to train their staff on the program. The training for the trainers will be conducted every six months to ensure new supervisors receive the training and the program is continued. The focus of all the training that is taking place on the hospital grounds is to identify potential violent situations and to prevent them

The quality of the program is measured by the amount of employees that are trained in the program. The purpose of the program is to train the entire staff of this program. The more employees that are trained, the more watchful and alert eyes the hospital will have in noticing warning signs of potential violent incidences. For record keeping purposes, a training log has been established, and it contains all the names of the employees who have been trained.

As the first persons to arrive on the scene of a violent situation, the Security Department alone is responsible for controlling the violent situation. They are in charge of talking to the violent individual, calming down that individual, and even taking down that individual, if necessary. When available, the Psychiatry Department will also respond to violent situations to provide clinical services.

The trained staff now has the skill to watch for warning signs and to take measures to protect themselves, their patients, volunteers, and the visitors of the hospital. They are more wary of particular wards that care for potentially violent patients.

The veterans' psychiatric ward is one area that is monitored for possible violence. Patient to patient, and patient to staff violence incidents place the staff and patients at great danger of injury. Violence training has increased the staffs'

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