Document Type



Doctor of Nursing Practice



Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Dr. Vanessa Loyd, College of Nursing


Vanessa Loyd, DNP, PhD, RN

Anne L. Thatcher, DNP, MSW, APRN, PMHNP-BC, LMSW

Charles Whitson, DNP, APRN, PMHNP-BC, RN


Problem: Workplace violence (WPV) in healthcare has become an epidemic demanding change. WPV is three to four times higher in the healthcare industry compared to other workplaces. For this project, WPV will be defined as any act of physical violence from a patient to a staff member. Community meetings are one evidence-based approach to decreasing WPV in psychiatric inpatient hospitals. Methods: This descriptive observational project compared data before and after implementing a targeted WPV community meeting, including unit rules, staff and patient expectations, a definition of WPV, and medication options available to reduce anxiety and irritability. This project assessed the impact of the community meetings. The aim was to reduce incidents of WPV by 20% during a 90-day pilot period. The primary outcome measure of interest was the incidence of WPV. The question being addressed: For adult patients aged 18-years and older admitted to an inpatient psychiatric unit, what is the effect of implementing a targeted WPV community meeting on WPV over a 90-day period compared to a general community meeting as conducted prior to its implementation? Results: Prior to implementing the targeted WPV community meeting, there were (N=10) physical assaults by patients toward staff from June through August 2020. Following implementation from June-August 2021, there were (N=5) physical assaults. Implications for Practice: Community meetings support the decrease of WPV by encouraging a shift within the culture by setting a climate for respect between patients and staff and creating a safer environment.