The Safety from Violence for Healthcare Employees (SAVE) Act is newly proposed federal legislation to give healthcare workers the same legal protections against assault and intimidation that flight crews and airport workers have under federal law. U.S. Reps. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) and Larry Bucshon, MD, (R-IN) are the original cosponsors of the bill, and the MHA urges all members to contact their U.S. representative to ask them to cosponsor H.R. 7961. Contact information is available through the American Hospital Association’s action alert on the bill.
The increase in acts of violence against healthcare workers in every setting — inpatient, outpatient, ambulatory and home care — is frightening, and the MHA is committed to doing everything possible to respond to this crisis and show support for those delivering patient care. In addition to offering federal-level protections to healthcare workers, the SAVE Act would provide grants to hospitals for programs to help reduce the incidence of violence in care settings. These grants could be used for training hospital personnel, coordinating with state and local law enforcement, and purchasing equipment or technology that will assist in creating a safer environment.
On a related note, the MHA has developed workplace safety posters for members to display throughout their facilities to highlight the consequences of causing physical harm to healthcare workers or hospital property. Complimentary copies of the materials are available to MHA members upon request.
Members and other citizens concerned about the safety of healthcare workers are encouraged to ask their U.S. representative to cosponsor the SAVE Act as quickly as possible. It is among the MHA’s highest legislative priorities at the federal and state level. For more information, contact Laura Appel at the MHA.