Health care workers in Minnesota face various challenges while providing care to patients. One concerning issue is the rising incidents of patient violence toward health care professionals.
This problem raises the question of whether or not Minnesota health care workers require increased protection against patient violence. Professionals in the health care industry should understand the risks they face in their workplaces.
Rising incidents of patient violence
Nurses, doctors and other medical staff have faced verbal abuse, threats and even physical assaults from patients. This is a problem not only in Minnesota, but all over the nation. More concerning is the fact that the frequency of these incidents is on the rise.
Impact on health care workers
The effects of patient violence on health care workers can be extreme. Physical injuries resulting from assaults can lead to missed workdays and long-term health issues. However, the emotional toll of such incidents can be just as damaging. Health care professionals may experience heightened stress, anxiety and even PTSD due to these events.
Several strategies could address violence and enhance the protection of health care workers. Health care facilities should invest in better security measures when possible. This could include new surveillance systems and trained security personnel.
Legal and policy considerations
Legislation and workplace policies play a crucial role in protecting health care workers. Promoting awareness and education among patients and workers could go a long way toward improving safety at the workplace level. On the state level, a new health care safe zone legislation could offset the costs accrued by facilities to enact safety measures.
The safety and well-being of health care workers in Minnesota are essential for a functional healthcare system. A study from the National Library of Medicine shows that approximately 1.7 million emergency department contacts per year involve violent or agitated patients. Taking the right measures today can ensure that these essential health care workers remain safe and secure in their place of work.