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Aggression and violence – it’s never OK

Occupational Violence

 

Our caring staff help others when they’re at their most vulnerable. But they are regularly confronted with violence and aggression – from patients, visiting friends and family, even bystanders.

The people who behave this way are not just those under the influence of alcohol or drugs. It’s often everyday people who find themselves in a stressful situation.

No matter what the situation, violence and aggression towards our staff is never OK.

 

Patient and Visitor expectations

Peninsula Health is committed to working in partnership with patients, clients, families and carers to ensure the best possible care. A patient’s healthcare is a shared responsibility, so it is important that everyone understands and acts on their responsibilities.

When you come to Peninsula Health as a patient, client or visitor, you agree to act respectfully. This includes committing to the following conduct:

  • I will not behave violently and speak or act in an aggressive tone
  • I will not make physical or verbal threats
  • I will not bring weapons to Peninsula Health
  • I will not use any object as a weapon.

Aggression and violence against our staff, volunteers or other patients will not be tolerated. If you are unable to act respectfully while in our care or when visiting our sites, you may have your care terminated or be asked to leave the hospital.  In some cases, a patient may be required to agree to a Behavioural Contract to continue receiving care in the hospital.  

 

Unacceptable behaviour

Unacceptable behaviour has a major impact on the physical and mental wellbeing of our staff.  

Examples of unacceptable behaviour include:

  • aggressive gestures or expressions such as eye rolling and sneering
  • verbal abuse such as yelling, swearing and name calling
  • intimidating physical behaviour
  • physical assault such as biting, spitting, scratching, pushing, shoving, tripping and grabbing
  • extreme acts of violence and aggression such as hitting, punching, strangulation, kicking, personal threats, threats with weapons, sexual assault.

 

Behavioural Contracts at Peninsula Health 

In some cases, a patient may be required to agree to a Behavioural Contract to continue receiving care in the hospital. The contract will ensure that the patient agrees to be respectful in all dealings with both their healthcare team and with other patients in the hospital. It also states that any violence or aggression, physical or verbal, will not be tolerated by Peninsula Health staff.

A breach of a Behavioural Contract may see a patient’s care terminated by Peninsula Health.

 

What to do if you’re feeling overwhelmed?

If you find yourself losing control, remove yourself from the situation until you are in a better frame of mind.

We have outdoor spaces and family areas where you can go to have a rest and think about an appropriate way to deal with the situation.

If you are unable to act respectfully towards our staff, volunteers or other patients, you may have your care terminated or be asked to leave the hospital.

Our caring staff are here to help you get better, but aggressive and violent behaviour is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

 

What to do if you witness aggressive or violent behaviour?

If you witness an act of aggression or violence, do not get involved. Please report it immediately to the Nurse in Charge or a member of your healthcare team.