Recent information provided by the American College of Emergency Physicians indicates that emergency medical personnel are having to deal with an increase in violent or abusive patients when trying to provide care. Dr. Gregory Brammer has recognized that this is an increasingly prevalent issue and aims to provide advice, training and support to those who are affected. These tips will help anybody deal with violent or abusive patients in the workplace.
- Speak softly and avoid raising your voice when speaking to patients, as this could exacerbate the issue and lead you into a shouting match that could degenerate into violence.
- Remain as neutral as possible, which means not taking sides if disputes arise between patients or with visitors. You should try to refrain from having a judgmental attitude at all times.
- Try to take control of the situation by demonstrating that you know what is best for the patient, though you must try to do so without being demanding or expecting the patient to start complying with you without first rebuilding trust. This means that you should not try to push the patient towards better behavior, instead maintaining a professional air at all times.
- Maintain distance between you and abusive patients, so that there is less chance that they could grab you or conduct themselves violently in other manners.
- Avoid prolonged and direct eye contact. When looking the patient in the eyes, try to remain calm and soothing, rather than appearing confrontational.
Dr. Gregory Brammer hopes that by following these pointers, more emergency medical personnel will be able to avoid violent instances.