Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario

Preventing Violence, Harassment and Bullying Against Health Workers

Type of Guideline: 
Healthy Work Environments
Publication date: 
About this Guideline:

Violence against health workers is already endemic and growing rapidly. To stem and reverse that risk, the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) has issued an updated edition of its Workplace Violence, Harassment and Bullying Against Health Workers best practice guideline (BPG).

The BPG provides 15 evidence-based recommendations for health service organizations and academic institutions so they can recognize, prevent and manage violence, harassment and bullying in the workplace, changes that will enable nurses and other health professionals to focus even more care on patients. Recommendations focus on: (1) risk assessment tools and strategies; (2) organizational policies, procedures, and responsibilities; and (3) educational approaches and strategies.

The second edition of this guideline builds upon the most recent and relevant evidence to improve earlier guidelines issued in 2008 and 2009.

"The best practice guideline allows organization to develop a workplace violence prevention program that meets leading practice and that can be sustained regardless of other issues that impact the healthcare sector. Working through the recommendations in the guideline will give organizations the confidence that they are taking critical steps to protect healthcare workers and provide quality care to their patients."

- Henrietta Van hulle, Expert Panel Co-Chair


"Workplace violence has become an international plague to all sectors of healthcare. This best practice guideline has the potential to provide the needed guidance across healthcare sectors for the prevention and management of workplace violence."

- Gordon Gillespie, Expert Panel Co-Chair