Emergency Physicians Applaud House Bill to Prevent Violence in the Emergency Department

WASHINGTON, D.C.— The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) applauds the House passage of the bipartisan, “Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act,” sponsored by Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT). 

“The epidemic of violence in our nation’s emergency departments is unacceptable,” said William Jaquis, MD, FACEP, president of ACEP. “ACEP appreciates Representative Courtney’s unwavering leadership on this critical issue.”

ACEP worked closely with Rep. Courtney on the development of the legislation, which requires certain employers in the health care and social service sectors to develop and implement plans to prevent violence against health care workers. In fact, the Congressman noted ACEP’s leadership on efforts to curb violence in emergency departments during his remarks made on the House floor this morning.

ACEP has been instrumental in shining a light on the rampant violence in the emergency department (ED), and has been working with Congress, the Joint Commission, Occupational Safety and Health Administration among others, to improve policies and share resources. This bill comes on the heels of a new campaign with the Emergency Nurses Association, “No Silence on ED Violence,” to raise awareness about the epidemic of violence that threatens the health and safety of medical teams and patients.

“The passage of this bill is an important step to protect the medical professionals responsible for the health and wellness of millions of patients,” said Dr. Jaquis. “But there is more to be done. ACEP will continue working with champions and partners to secure passage of this legislation in the Senate and ensure the safety of our emergency care teams.”

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) is the national medical society representing emergency medicine. Through continuing education, research, public education, and advocacy, ACEP advances emergency care on behalf of its 40,000 emergency physician members, and the more than 150 million people they treat on an annual basis. For more information, visit www.acep.org and www.emergencyphysicians.org.

Contact: Steve Arnoff | sarnoff@acep.org | Twitter @EmergencyDocs

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