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Sentinel Event Alert and Quick Safety newsletters

Sentinel Event Alert and Quick Safety articles developed by the Joint Commission covering the topic of workplace violence prevention.


Quick Safety Issue 63: Addressing intimate partner violence and helping to protect patients

January 18, 2022
Health care providers reported an increase in intimate partner violence (IPV) during the COVID-19 pandemic. IPV survivors seek medical care in many health care settings, but survivors often don’t readily share their abuse experiences with providers unless specifically asked and if they are ready to accept help.

Quick Safety 47: De-escalation in Health Care

January 29, 2019
This Quick Safety presents de-escalation models and interventions for managing aggressive and agitated patients in the ED and inpatient settings. There are many different de-escalation techniques; this issue is intended to guide health care professionals to resources for more information and training.

Sentinel Event Alert 59: Physical and Verbal Violence Against Health Care Workers

April 16, 2018
The focus of this alert is to help your organization recognize and acknowledge workplace violence directed against healthcare workers from patients and visitors, better prepare staff to handle violence, and more effectively address the aftermath.

Sentinel Event Alert 57: The essential role of leadership in developing a safety culture

March 1, 2017

This Sentinel Event Alert discusses how leadership plays a key role in contributing to a safety and organizational culture.

Quick Safety 24: Bullying has no place in health care

June 20, 2016

Civility is a system value that improves safety in healthcare settings. The link between civility, workplace safety and patient care is not a new concept. The 2004 Institute of Medicine report, “Keeping Patients Safe: Transforming the Work Environment of Nurses,” emphasizes the importance of the work environment in which nurses provide care.

Quick Safety 5: Preventing violent and criminal events 

August 28, 2014

This issue discusses prevention strategies for violent criminal events in healthcare facilities. Safety actions to consider include: identifying risks and planning to reduce those risks, planning environmental design and administrative controls, training, implementing safety culture, and planning for post-event activities.

Quick Safety 4: Preparing for active shooter situations 

July 28, 2014

This issue discusses how healthcare facilities can prepare for active shooter situations. Safety actions suggested include: involving local law enforcement, developing a communication plan, establishing processes and procedures to ensure patient and employee safety, training and drilling employees, and planning for post-event activities.

Sentinel Event Alert 45: Preventing violence in the health care setting 

June 3, 2010

Once considered safe havens, healthcare institutions today are confronting steadily increasing rates of crime, including violent crimes such as assault, rape and homicide. This Sentinel Event Alert discusses a range of topics which include: identifying high risk areas, perpetrators of violence to patients, prevention strategies, existing Joint Commission requirements, and Joint Commission suggested actions.

Sentinel Event Alert 40: Behaviors that undermine a culture of safety

July 9, 2008 (updated September 2016)

Behaviors that undermine a culture of safety are a problem in health care. While the term “unprofessional behavior” is preferred instead of “disruptive behavior,” the suggested actions in this Alert remain relevant.