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Workplace violence: OSHA updates guidelines

April 7, 2015
by Sandra Hoban, Managing Editor
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More than 23,000 employees sustained significant injuries because of violent incidents at work in 2013. More than 70 percent of these injuries were a result of attacks on healthcare workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has updated its 1995 and 2004 editions of Guidelines for Preventing Workplace Violence for Healthcare and Social Service Workers to help employers implement best practices that reduce or eliminate risks of violence.

The revised guidelines include new research into the causes of workplace violence, risk factor and offers preventive measures to curbing assaults. The guidelines also recommend developing a written program to prevent workplace violence. An effective program should include management commitment and employee participation, an analysis of the workplace, hazard prevention/control, safety training and recordkeeping along with a program evaluation.

“It is unacceptable that the people who dedicate their lives to caring for our loved ones often work in fear of injury or death,” Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health David Michaels, MD, said in a release.

Visit OSHA’s Workplace Violence online page for more information on preventing these occurrences.

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