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Emergency department workers' perceptions of security officers' effectiveness during violent events.
Gillespie-GL; Gates-DM; Miller-M; Howard-PK
Work 2012 May; 42(1):21-27
OBJECTIVE: The emergency department (ED) is among the most at-risk settings for violence by patients and visitors against ED workers. A first response to potential or actual events of workplace violence is often contacting hospital security officers for assistance. The purpose of this study is to describe ED workers' views of security officers' effectiveness during actual events of verbal and/or physical violence. PARTICIPANTS: Healthcare workers (n=31) from an urban pediatric ED in the Midwest United States. METHODS: Participants were interviewed regarding their experiences with workplace violence. Verbatim transcripts were qualitatively analyzed. RESULTS: Six themes were identified: (1) a need for security officers, (2) security officers' availability and response, (3) security officers' presence or involvement, (4) security officers' ability to handle violent situations, (5) security officers' role with restraints, and (6) security officers' role with access. CONCLUSIONS: It is important that early communication between security officers and ED workers takes place before violent events occur. A uniform understanding of the roles and responsibilities of security officers should be clearly communicated to ED workers. Future research needs to be conducted with hospital-based security officers to describe their perceptions about their role in the prevention and management of workplace violence.
Injuries; Physical-reactions; Physiological-response; Behavior; Psychological-responses; Psychology; Emergency-responders; Emergency-response; Law-enforcement-workers; Safety-personnel; Safety-measures; Behavioral-testing; Injury-prevention; Health-care-facilities; Health-care-personnel; Medical-facilities; Medical-personnel; Health-surveys; Qualitative-analysis; Workplace-studies; Author Keywords: Workplace violence; emergency department; security officers; pediatrics
Gordon Lee Gillespie, PhD, University of Cincinnati College of Nursing, P.O. Box 21-0038, Cincinnati, OH 45221-0038, USA
Issue of Publication
University of Cincinnati
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division