CMS Urges Training Staff on Preventing Violence
CMS’ recent memorandum to state survey agency directors regarding workplace safety in hospitals includes these statements:1
- Hospitals should educate and train staff to identify patients at risk of harm to self or others, to identify environmental patient safety risk factors, and to use mitigation tactics.
- Hospitals should tailor training to the services staff provide and the patient populations they serve. CMS expects hospitals to educate and train new staff during orientation and whenever policies and procedures change. Additionally, CMS recommends ongoing training at least every two years.
CMS offers these examples of hospitals it has cited regarding failures to meet obligations:
- A nurse in a unit without adequate staffing was sexually assaulted by a behavioral health patient. Other patients intervened to stop the attack.
- A patient died after hospital staff and law enforcement performed a takedown that led to a hospital custodian holding the patient down on the floor with his knee against the patient’s back.
- A patient acted out and was shot in his hospital room by off-duty police officers after hospital staff failed to perform appropriate assessment and de-escalation.
- Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Workplace violence — hospitals. Nov. 28, 2022.
CMS’ recent memorandum to state survey agency directors regarding workplace safety in hospitals includes statements on training and education staff on violence prevention and mitigation.
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