Health care providers and support staff interacting with patients and visitors often face emotionally charged situations that have the potential to escalate. We work with patients who may be in pain, confused, unstable and sometimes combative. And in non-clinical areas, there is the chance for a workplace altercation when providing any type of customer service or administrative support.
Workplace safety is a critical issue and UF Health leaders consider it a top priority. The organization offers a host of resources to help educate and equip our faculty and staff with the knowledge and behavioral skills to help recognize and de-escalate fraught and potentially dangerous situations. And help is available whenever we need immediate back-up assistance and response.
Please help protect yourself and your colleagues: Have a plan in place should you face possibly hostile or threatening interactions at work. A helpful starting place is the “Workplace Safety and Violence Prevention” site on our UF Health Bridge intranet. You can find it under the “Policies & Procedures” tab.
The site includes links and information about safety protocols, crime prevention classes, security contact phone numbers and other tools for faculty and staff provided by UF Health Shands, UF Health Physicians, UF, the UF Police Department and UF Health Jacksonville. For example, under the UF Health Shands tab you’ll find details about our Security contacts, emergency operations plans and response protocols, the UF Health Protect App and the UF Alert-Shands emergency notification system.
You can also link to the UF Health Shands Violence Prevention Task Force from the UF Health Shands section of this site.
“Nurses in Gainesville can find information about our de-escalation course, staff in Jacksonville can review emergency plans and all employees can pinpoint their HR resources,” said Irene Alexaitis, D.N.P., R.N., NEA-BC, UF Health Shands Hospital chief nursing officer and Nursing and Patient Services vice president. “Health care is a rewarding but challenging industry, and we’re committed to keeping you safe and helping you succeed in your role.”