Enhancing the Safety Climate and Reducing Violence Against Staff in Closed Hospital Wards

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Abstract

This study examined the effectiveness of an intervention program to enhance unit safety climate and minimize employee risk of injury from patient violence. The intervention program, including a 3-day workshop, was offered to personnel on maximum security units of an Israeli psychiatric hospital. Safety climate was examined before and after the implementation of the intervention, and incidents of patient violence were investigated. Six months after the intervention, a significant improvement in employees’ perceptions of management’s commitment to safety as well as a marginally significant improvement in communication about safety issues were found. This study demonstrated that an intervention program to enhance safety climate was associated with a decrease in the number of aggressive incidents. The researchers concluded that this intervention program is likely to return a sense of safety to workers and reduce workplace violence.

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