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The Washington State Psychiatric Hospital Work, Stress, and Health Project: final report to Washington DSHS Mental Health Division and Western State Hospital.

Yragui NL; Silverstein B; Foley M; Johnson W; Demsky C
Olympia, WA: Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, 2012 Sep; :1-75
The growing demand for healthy workplaces creates a climate in which patient safety and direct care provider well-being have become critical strategic priorities for hospitals. Research can help identify and prioritize key influences on workplace violence and disruptive behavior and increase understanding of how direct care provider working conditions influence health, family, and work outcomes. Therefore, the Washington State Psychiatric Hospital Work, Stress, and Health Project addressed two important research needs. Research Need #1: Work stress and health research needs to describe both the critical context resources and work experiences that influence workplace violence such as patient assaults, disruptive behavior and witnessing disruptive behavior. Research Need #2: Workplace violence research needs an empirically-supported model linking work context resources to workplace violence and to health, family, and work outcomes. Design and Methods The Washington Work, Stress, and Health Project involved collaboration between the Washington State Psychiatric Hospitals and the Washington Department of Labor & Industries SHARP research program. The research consisted of a survey study involving qualitative and quantitative assessments and additional focus groups and individual interviews. In early 2012, 485 direct care providers and supervisors completed a survey assessing workplace violence assaults, disruptive behavior, and workplace context characteristics expected to influence workplace violence and health, family and work outcomes. Of these respondents, 301 were from Western State Hospital. Survey respondents also provided qualitative descriptions of significant assault experiences, and suggested interventions to improve the quality of their work life. These findings are now being used by our Intervention Development Team, consisting of key Western State Hospital management, union and direct care provider stakeholders to develop and pilot a workplace violence prevention intervention with supervisory nurses and care providers. An ongoing process evaluation documents in three phases the details of the current state of the organization's culture and practices (Phase I); intervention development (Phase II); and intervention pilot implementation (Phase III). Findings Aim #1. Describing workplace violence critical stressors and workplace violence experience We investigated the nature of work context resources including scheduling, staffing, organizational support, and workplace violence experience as critical stressors using qualitative data from the care provider work, stress and health survey, as well as, focus groups, individual interview data, and from minutes of discussions with our intervention development team. In content analysis of phase 1, we found four primary themes: staffing demands, social support, communication, and training.
Medical-facilities; Medical personnel; Safety-measures; Safety-programs; Workers; Work-environment; Behavior; Force; Stress; Worker-health; Psychology; Psychological-stress; Psychological-reactions; Psychological-responses; Training
Nanette L. Yragui, Ph.D., Occupational Health Research Psychologist, Washington Department of Labor & Industries, Safety & Health & Research for Prevention (SHARP), PO Box 44330, Olympia, WA 98504-4330
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The Washington State Psychiatric Hospital Work, Stress, and Health Project: final report to Washington DSHS Mental Health Division and Western State Hospital
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Washington State Department Labor and Industries
Page last reviewed: February 3, 2023
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division