Sentinel Event Alert focuses on physical, verbal workplace violence against healthcare staff
Healthcare workers can be subjected to many forms of violence in the workplace. Lisa Tenney, RN, of the Maryland Emergency Nurses Association, says she’s been bitten, kicked, punched, pushed, shoved, spat upon and scratched. But it doesn’t end there.

“I have been bullied and called very ugly names,” Tenney said. “I’ve had my life, the life of my unborn child, and of my other family members threatened, requiring security escort to my car.”

Sentinel Event Alert Issue 59, “Physical and Verbal Violence Against Healthcare Workers,” focuses on the physical and verbal violence directed toward healthcare workers. This alert sets out to help organizations:
  • Recognize and acknowledge workplace violence directed against healthcare workers from patients and visitors.

  • Better prepare staff to handle violence.

  • More effectively address the aftermath.
The alert, which can be found on The Joint Commission website at, includes an infographic titled, “Take a stand: No more violence to healthcare workers” that The Joint Commission urges organizations to share. Also, check out The Joint Commission’s Facebook and Twitter social media pages to see a series of memes previewing the alert, including the graphic shown above.