Latrobe Regional Hospital management has agreed to implement a range of measures to improve the safety of staff and patients following a series of violent incidents.
ANMF held multiple members meetings across the hospital in August and September to understand nurses’ and midwives’ concerns and discuss possible violence prevention and management measures.
While serious incidents had occurred in the mental health wards, nurses and midwives were also at risk in other wards from violent and aggressive patients or their friends and family members.
ANMF (Vic Branch) Secretary Lisa Fitzpatrick said: ‘Nurses and midwives shouldn’t end up in the emergency department while trying to provide patient care.
‘ANMF and its members proposed that management introduce a range of practical solutions to ensure the prevention of violence rather than just dealing with it afterwards.’
In response to discussions with ANMF, Latrobe Regional Hospital management has agreed to appoint an OVA co-ordinator which is a position that has played a critical role ensuring safe systems of work are being implemented in other health services.
Latrobe Regional Hospital chief executive officer Peter Craighead will also co-chair the hospital’s OVA working group. ANMF believes executive leadership on these committees is vital to ensure all steps are taken to prevent and manage violence and aggression.
An additional dedicated security guard will be employed in the emergency department, eight hours a day, seven days a week and absences will be backfilled.
An additional seclusion room will be prepared for use in the Flynn mental health unit.
The hospital will establish a working group, involving ANMF to develop pre-admission protocols for the risk assessment of patients with a history of violence.
‘These measures are a good start, but there remains much more work to do,’ Ms Fitzpatrick said.
Nurses and midwives should always report violence and aggression incidents through their workplace reporting system in the first instance as well as notify the ANMF via our online OVA notification form.
Latrobe Regional Hospital has agreed:
- to appoint an OVA co-ordinator
- that the chief executive officer Peter Craighead will co-chair the hospital’s OVA working group
- to employ an additional dedicated security guard in the emergency department
- to prepare an additional seclusion room for use in the Flynn mental health unit
- to establish a working group, involving ANMF, to develop pre-admission protocols for the risk assessment of patients with a history of violence.