The US Bureau of Labor Statistics finds health care and social workers are five times more likely to be the victims of assault or violence than workers in other major industries. But proposed regulations from the state’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health are intended to make California’s health workplaces safer.
Bonnie Castillo is with the California Nurses Association. She says the new rules are overdue.
"The hospital and clinic and various work sites have become increasingly more precarious and unsafe as a result of a number of reasons," she says, "including decreases in mental health services and social services that patients need."
The proposed rules include sections on staffing levels, risk assessments and incident-response procedures.