Coping with Violence in Mental Health Care Settings: Patient and Staff Member Perspectives on De-escalation Practices

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Abstract

This multiple case study explored de-escalation processes in threatening and violent situations based on patients and staff members perspectives. Our post hoc analysis indicated that de-escalation included responsive interactions influenced by the perspectives of both patients and staff members. We assembled their perspectives in a mental model consisting of three interdependent stages: (1) memories and hope, (2) safety and creativity and (3) reflective moments. The data indicated that both patients and staff strived for peaceful solutions and that a dynamic and sociological understanding of de-escalation can foster shared problem solving in violent and threatening situations.

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